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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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3,348 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,348
Reviews: 1,084
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.97%
Wants: 125
Gots: 601 | 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: 3,348 | Reviews: 1,084 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kegger22


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a cloudy, reddish brown with small head that quickly reduced to a collar. The aroma came through as boozy and the smell of old wood. The taste was malty sweet caramel with a taste of vanilla and alcohol. A slightly bitter aftertaste when away as Curmudgeon warmed. The feel was full bodied with low carbonation. Drinkability was reasonably good. As old ales go, not as good as Adam, but a very respectable entry from Founders.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2009 23:25:36 | More by kegger22
Photo of MDekker


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Is it Curmudgeon Old Ale, or Old Curmudgeon Ale? Regardless...

It pours out a hazy dark orange, with a small head of tiny bubbles. What's there looks creamy. Woo-ee! A potent, sweet alcohol aroma socks me in the nose. Smells oily, with caramel notes and a little banana, too. A little like Southern Comfort. The taste packs a punch, too. The caramel is there, along with alcohol, and not much bitterness - just a little in the aftertaste. In the mouth it's good - creamy, smooth, and thick. Nice. This was a good brew, but the high alcohol and the powerful presence of it would make it hard to down more than one of these. I'm still reeling some.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2006 02:21:31 | More by MDekker
Photo of Adrianized


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 04/09/11, poured into a snifter.

Clear red-mahogany in color.  One finger creamy head that settles.

Nose is malty and woodsy, sweet caramel, prunes, a little vanilla, boozy, and a faint fine cigar smoke.

First tasting seems hot, but a second later there's no alcohol burn.  Strong oak aged flavor, I guess that's the woodsy nose I smelled.  Big malty backbone and some bittering hops.  I'd say I taste caramel before I do molasses.

Mouthfeel is medium body and leaves a residue.  Carbonation is very good for an old ale.  Drinkability is really good.

Overall this is a nice oak aged beer.  It's good, but I suspect much better once aged. Overall a B/B+

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2011 21:12:43 | More by Adrianized
Photo of lsummers


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Looks fantastic, a hazy amber orange with some minimal lacing and some alcohol legs.

Smell isn't the best part of this beer but is still good. Malts, brown sugar, fig, and woody notes.

Taste is pretty big and drinkably great. Taste hits first with dark fruits and quickly changes to burnt caramel, toffee. The burnt but not smokey taste really comes through.

Mouthfeel is good, not overly sticky and sharp enough to be a drinkable sipper.

Overall it's a really good old ale. I would definitely try this one on draft but there are other favorites out there I prefere more.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2013 06:56:06 | More by lsummers
Photo of Franz4


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a chalice 2011 version bottles 4/4/11

A- Pours a dark copper with just a thin ring around the edge of the glass. Beer is slightly translucent.

S- first hit consists of just a touch of heat, followed by some raisin and fig notes. Malt backbone is present, but it seems most of the nose is relatively muted.

T- Gets more complex as it warms. Sweetness up front followed by pine bitterness in the back of the mouth. Neither is overpowering and they are balanced quite nicely. Raisin and plum are also present, as well as just a touch of heat that was also noticeable in the nose.

M- carbonation greets you and then gives way to a pillowy, silky smooth feel that is very, very nice.

O- A very good beer that's a definite sipper. This is very enjoyable now, but I'm also anxiously anticipating how this one might age, if the dark fruits note come out and the heat dies down just a bit this could be a very quaffable brew--still a sipper, but a mighty fine sipper.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 23:37:31 | More by Franz4
Photo of cradke


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Lighter brown and amber. Very thin head.

Smell: Sweet. Brown Sugar. Has some interesting plums and dark sweetness to it. Certainly some alcohol present. Kind of funky. Interesting, but I dig it

Taste: Sweet alcohol comes right up front. Some funky brown sugar and molasses comes up front. The alcohol is there. I'm grabbing some caramel. Almost kind of tart. Again, interesting with a bit of a weird aftertaste.

Mouthfeel. Thin with a mild lack of carbonation.

Overall: I'm going with the word funky on this. It's got a interesting sweetness to it with a very present alcohol to it. Lots of brown sugars and molasses to it. Not my favorite beer in the world but it's an interesting take on the style.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2012 05:07:43 | More by cradke
Photo of Overlord


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to a very generous Augustiner. I owe ya'.

Pours an orange caramel color with a quarter inch off-white head.

Smells like insanely sweet caramel with a tropical, pineapple-y sugary bite. There's a hint of ... chocolate? Where's that coming from?

Taste has warming alcohol on the tongue, there's burnt toffee, caramel, some dark fruit, a hint of tropical pineapple and tangelo. This is a very sweet beer. If there was a little less alcohol, and a little less grain on the aftertaste, I'd be a huge fan.

Nice comforting thick mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2010 07:35:39 | More by Overlord
Photo of matttttYCE


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Little head and lacing, probably because I poured it really slow and pretty cold (because I was looking out for snot like goop in my beer). Dark copper orange color, lots of sediment. Aromas of sweet dark fruit, caramel malts, brown sugar, toffee, molasses, nutty/pecan notes, and hints of oak and vanilla. Tastes much the same with all those dark fruit toffee molasses caramel brown sugar old ale notes with some nuts, tea, hops, and light oak. Medium body and smooth consistency. Light carbonation works well. Smooth finish.

Overall not the best old ale I've had, but a pretty good one. Only detractor is the appearance, with watching out for snot and lots of sediment it wasn't the best looking of brews either. But still good. Worth a try and I'd be Curmudgeon's Better Half is fantastic after having tasted this.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2012 06:43:29 | More by matttttYCE
Photo of TheMultiYeast


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 4/12/12

Hazy murky brown with lots of sediment in there Big bubbles around the edge of the glass. Very still beer.

Smell is sweet, molasses, woody, honey covered biscuits.

Taste is pretty well...tasty. More sweetness and oak then light bitterness, sweet black tea, hints of vanilla bean, slight warming booze.

Light carbonation, thick, delicious.

Good old Old Ale.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2012 01:00:08 | More by TheMultiYeast
Photo of Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer is mildly hazy and appears orange to copper in color. The head is off white hued, measuring approximately an inch thick. A substantial amount of lacing is left on the glass.

The aroma offers malt, alcohol, oak, vanilla, banana, and rum.

The flavor is strong and complex. As prefaced in the nose, alcohol, malt, and banana are the prevalent flavors. The beer is still a bit hot, and could likely benefit from some cellar time.

The feel is medium-heavy on the palate, with alcohol content noticeable throughout. Carbonation is moderate.

Overall, a decent brew from a great brewery. This one is a good candidate for sharing a few ways.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2011 03:50:57 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of siege06nd


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Not much to look at. Very cloudy copper brown with a quarter finger cream colored head. Excellent lacing, however, thick and fine. Too bad the color is so cloudy. Beers this color remind me of toilet water, which is not a good thing. I'll average it out, though, since the head and lacing are quite good.

S. Lots of caramel and some light fruit. Bread crust, brown sugar, and molasses as well. Good.

T. Follows the nose, with bread crust, caramel, some light herbal hoppiness, brown sugar, and fruit. Booze is very well hidden for ~10%. Some woodiness as well.

M. Medium-full bodied with low carbonation. Smooth and somewhat creamy. Good flavor balance.

O. I haven't had many Old Ales, but the ones I have have generally been a bit fruitier and sweeter. This is more refined and subtle. A tasty beer, but probably wouldn't want a whole lot of this. Good, but not particularly memorable.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2012 18:34:03 | More by siege06nd
Photo of RoamingGnome


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz botle into CBS snifter.

A) Minus the very minimal head on the pour. This looked like brandy in my snifter. The head fades quickly. There is nice clarity, and some alcohol feet.

S) Brown sugar sweetness, a little vanilla, some spice, and alcohol.

T) Sweetness hits as this passes over your lips. There is brown sugar, caramel and vanilla. The spices are nutmeg and maybe a little cinnamon. It reminded me of my pancake batter, up to the alcohol heat, maybe my pancakes could use some booze.

M) Medium body, with not much carbonation to speak of. This was a little oily, and sticky. The alcohol fades slowly, eventually providing a somewhat dry, earthy aftertaste.

O) A nice sipper. I enjoyed it, but in hindsight, not the best choice on a warm evening. Think I'll cellar the rest of these for the fall.

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2012 02:40:18 | More by RoamingGnome
Photo of stonermouse


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance is is a fairly deep copper color, with a fast-receding head and little carbonation. The body has a lot of floaties, which I didn't necessarily grade down for, because I'm not certain if it's part of the "Old Ale" style.

Smell is pleasant, with generic malt, booze, and a mild fruity aroma coming through.

The taste is nice, if a little boozy. Again, I'm not too familiar with the Old Ale style, but this thing mimics a barleywine in most ways. Perhaps it's an Old Ale because it has an old guy on the label; I have not idea. There is a touch of cherry flavor and a rye-like bite to it. Fairly complex, yet for all of the bold flavors it presents, it is surprisingly mild and drinkable.

Mouthfeel is solid; a little syrupy, but suits the flavors well.

Drinkability is excellent, as there a fair amount here to discover. One or two is good for a single sitting, which is good, because, in addition to Founders quality, they have the Founders price point.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 23:10:14 | More by stonermouse
Photo of kylehay2004


3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: two finger thick off white head on a murky amber with golden hues body.

S: mostly toasted malts, light toffee, breads, molasses and some dark fruits, mostly of the fig and apricot variety.

T: sweeter than I was expecting, mostly from toffee, caramel and brown sugars. malt and bread heavy. the alcohol is well hidden. I fairly spicey finish.

M: creamy and smooth medium body with moderate carbonation.

Overall: The malt profile is excellent and adds a lot to the mouthfeel. Its a little sweet for how I like this style. Very drinkable for the ABV.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2012 22:11:50 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of kasper

New York

3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a semi translucent copper with auburn highlights. Minimal banana cream colored head that leaves tads of lacing when swirled. Looks like a barleywine or strong Dogfish head ale like the Fort.

S: Smell is sweet, fruity, all malt and alcohol. Smells just like a barely wine. Maybe some raspberry, raison, a little sweet cherry possible, who knows. It's just really sweet on the nose. As it warms, banana definitely comes through

T: Was expecting a big burst of sweetness here but it's surprisingly well balanced. Really malty and bready. Some banana flavor. Maybe some oak. A little spicy at the end. But that big hit of alcohol and sweetness I was expecting from the appearance and smell never hits, and that's a good thing. Never tasted something like this before. It's enjoyable.

M: Thick, slightly velvety but overall a very smooth and palette coating feel. Tiny bit of sharpness on the finish. Not sure if that is alcohol or spice working. Overall this is one of the strongpoints of the beer next to the taste.

D: This beer is not sweet in a cloying way, which I expected it to be from the poor. It's very well balanced somehow. I'm not sure I'd drink more than one of these in a sitting but can breeze through the first one quite easily. A good beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2008 03:03:32 | More by kasper
Photo of greenmonstah

New Hampshire

3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into tulip

A - Hazy brown with orange hues and a thin tan head.

S - Molasses, leather, caramel, prunes, wood.

T - Hugely malty, insane caramel flavor and toffee, molasses, prunes, vanilla, oak and over-ripe pear.

M - Medium body, sticky and wet. Works for the beer, but I don't love it. Needs to dry out just a tiny bit.

O - Very good beer overall. Tons of different flavors going on and they all work together well.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2012 19:44:49 | More by greenmonstah
Photo of Kashdonkey


3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got on tap at Bryant Lake Bowl. Not picking up a lot of aroma on this one... but a lot of good things happening once i tasted it. Aftertaste was fantastic with a lot of carmel and roastiness with mayble a little brown sugar. Mouthfeel was great on tap... very good creaminess.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2013 17:59:42 | More by Kashdonkey
Photo of minterro


3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought at Spartan Spirits for around 2.5-3 bucks

A&S: Very sweet bready tones with hints of marshmallows. Dark translucent orange colored beer with and not so impressive off-white colored head.

T&M: Not very intense upfront. Very consistent tones in the mid-taste taste and the smell but also including some toffee like flavors. Spicy clean alcohol finish. extremely smooth, medium bodied with low carbonation (but still has a relatively apparent presence).

Overall: I found this beer pretty tasty and quite easy to drink for the style and for the alcohol content. Not something I would be interested in buying a four pack of but something I could see myself getting yearly as a single.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2013 01:10:34 | More by minterro
Photo of martyl1000


3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

UPDATE: I'm having to downgrade my quick rating of 7/13/12 (4.25).

Pours a brandy brown , with a nice off-white head that sticks around pretty well.

The aroma seems to really hold back. What little one gets is sweet malt and dark dried fruits, prune in particular. A whiff of banana taffy.

Definitely the best old ale I've tried, though I think I've now determined I don't like old ales. This beer approaches the general vicinity of sweetness. But other flavors dominate: wet cardboard, mild leather, rum. Hop bitterness? I think so, though certainly a refracted hop flavor. And what sweetness there is is of the cloying variety.

Great mouth feel. Smooth, well-carbonated, viscous. The abv definitely introduces itself.

I can intellectualize the quality of good old ales. But I think I just don't like them. This one definitely carries a much less offensive combo of cardboard and leather I've seen in others, like North Coast Old Stock or Anchor Old Foghorn (wait, that's an English barley wine). I actually love Bell's Old Ale, so, what're ya gonna do?

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2014 01:11:35 | More by martyl1000
Photo of BaronVonBeauregard


3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Reddish brown; quick head. Nose is strong, caramel roasted malt, rich. Taste is on target, big malts, and sweetness. I like it. Has a barley wine taste. Lots of sediment in this bottle. It does hide the 9.8 % abv very well; not a bad aftertaste either. Solid beer, I'd drink this beer again.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2013 19:59:00 | More by BaronVonBeauregard
Photo of nickapalooza86


3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

well I just picked up a 4 pack of this years release, so I decided to pop one of last years and give it a review.

Pours a hazy deep orangish amber color, not much head.

Smell is molasses, dark fruits, toffee and a wee bit of oak shining through, not the most pungent aroma but very refined.

Taste is a lot of caramel, toffee, sweet molasses, oaky and a stange herbal hop flavor that I do not much care for, with out that note it would be next to perfect.

Mouthfeel is silky and full, low carbonation, finishes rather dry.

I liked it, I will continue to by a couple of 4 packs every year, It may not be the most flashy beer out there but it is damn good none the less!

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2013 01:47:34 | More by nickapalooza86
Photo of far333


3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazed burnt orange color with a low dark beige frothy head that settles quickly. Rich aroma of caramel, ripe fruit, citrus, vanilla and cotton candy. Rich flavor that mirrors the nose, some alcohol sweetness and warmth, bourbonesque notes, rich caramel, hints of smoke, stone fruits, and cotton candy. Semi-full mouthfeel, slight warming of the cheeks. Great beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2012 21:06:25 | More by far333
Photo of mdvatab


3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz stubby bottle into snifter.

Aroma: Rich, malty carmelized sugar. Scotch, and candied pineapple. Tantalizing, sweet, boozy aroma.

Appearance: Copper-amber, clear in general, but some noticeable fine "floaties". Thin head dissipates quickly, and this one leaves legs, not lacing, on the inside of the glass.

Flavor: Sweet, rich, and malty with some smooth butterscotch, balanced by nice, substantial bitterness. Bitterness comes through in the middle, and lingers a bit in the finish. The bitterness is appropriate, however--not overwhelming or out of place.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full, syrupy body. Medium-low carbonation lends to smoothness. Some slightly-drying tannins in the end.

Overall: Definitely enjoyed this one. Not QUITE as refined as it could have been, but still a delicious mix of booze, carmelly malt, and hoppy bitterness. Recommended!

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2011 00:44:36 | More by mdvatab
Photo of metter98

New York

3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is brownish-amber in color and didn't arrive to my table with that much of a head. It's difficult to see any rising bubbles in the glass.
S: A somewhat sweet smell is evident--most likely from the molasses--but it isn't all that strong.
T: The taste is very well balanced and starts off with malty sweetness followed by hop bitterness in the finish. You can definitely taste some of the alcohol.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate, smooth, and somewhat syrupy.
D: I don't think I could have more than one of these in a sitting but it's definitely a good beer to sip.

Serving type: on-tap

05-05-2010 12:53:13 | More by metter98
Photo of david18

New York

3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a number of drafts of this while it was on tap at my local neighborhood bar. Very good beer and a nice strong alternative to all the double ipas out there.

Color was a dark brown with a red hue. A bit hazy and not very carbonated.

Aroma was of both dark fruit and some candy (caramel, etc).

Flavor is quite balanced and features the dark candy flavors as well as fruit and hops. Very easy to drink for the strength.

Overall a good beer that I look forward to hopefully seeing again soon.

Serving type: on-tap

10-04-2011 19:34:06 | More by david18
Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 3,348 ratings.