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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

3,695 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,695
Reviews: 1,110
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 10.95%
Wants: 142
Gots: 707 | FT: 46
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: 3,695 | Reviews: 1,110 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Naters333
3.86/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a snifter from a 12 oz bottle.

A-Pours a nice deep amber color with a nice bubbly head. Head is slightly off white. Has some nice lacing and good carbonation. Maintains a nice thin head on the side of the snifter as I drink

S-Not a very pungeant smell. Pick up some fruits, but my nose is so clogged right now, unless its just bursting with a strong smell, I'm useless. Will come back to this.

T-Alcohol, sweet, toffee, malts, burnt,complex,

M-Very nice. A sipper for me.

O-This is just a nice beer on a cold day. It is what it is. Not my style, but would like this to just sip on in front of the fireplace. Will come back to this beer for more in depth review.

Naters333, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of oberon
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a nonic a clear rich auburn color with a thinner but well sustained white head.Alcohol dipped fruit and vanilla stand out most in the nose with a hint of brown sugar,its warming at malt driven.Mouthfeel is a little sticky and a little thinner than expected,flavors are sweet up front with some cherry-like fruitiness and vanilla and the alcohol gives a little burn,there is a racey drying hop finish with is nice and balanced.A sipping brew, a nice warmer on a day like yesterday.

oberon, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of Mantooth
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Samichlaus (name dropping) snifter.

A: Pours with no head and very minimal lacing and a deep amber color, one of the prettier beers I've seen in a glass. It just looks like an amazing beer. There was a good bit of sedimentation floating around my glass, which doesn't usually bother me but it was a bit extreme in this case & coagulated in a nasty way. Is this a bottle conditioned beer?

S: Sweet: milk chocolate notes, molasses, alcohol (9.8%).

T: Loads of malt. Very smooth considering the high gravity, not too boozy. Some hints of oak and earth.

M: Medium to light body, especially since I anticipated it being very heavy.

D: What you'd expect from Founders, a very good beer.

Mantooth, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of mikesgroove
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a 12 oz bottle that I received in a trade a long while ago, but never got around to actually trying. Served at cellar temperature in an over sized wine glass. Consumed on 07/22/2008.

Poured this one out in to the glass and it looked like a Barley Wine at first. Very hazy with a touch of sediment in the bottom. Dark amber color with some orange highlight and a minimal head. Nice side glass lacing through and a good bit of carbonation could be seen streaking up from the bottom.

The aroma was charged with alcohol. Really quite hot this surprised me. Brandy aroma was dominant. As it warmed through it did get a touch better and ended up with a nice malty aroma. Nice sweet smells of caramel and grain, some cereal like tones as well. A touch of spice in the flavor was evident right away, but the flavor was a touch hot as well until it warmed. Nice oak flavor running through here, with touches of cereal like grains and a nice all around profile. Bready in the middle with a drier, slightly hoped finish, but most of it was drown out but the rum like tasty and peppery flavor that ended it. The feel was very nice, with a good carbonation profile that just would not quite, and a medium body. A solid sipper, this one took me a bit to be able to finish as there was no way that this was going down all in one shot.

Overall a very solid beer, and a good example of the style, though I doubt this is anything that I would really seek out, as there are some much nice examples out there. Still though if it were sitting on the shelf near me I would definitely pick this one up.

mikesgroove, Jul 24, 2008
Photo of mooseo
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into snifter.

A - Dark copper brown with some ruby highlights. Small off-white head.

S - Wood, roasted malts, vanilla bean, slight bourbon notes.

T - Dark fruit, vanilla, molasses, oak, and caramel. Nice balance and complexity. Sweet up front followed by a slightly bitter finish. Some alcohol evident.

M - Medium-full body. Smooth and silky. Low carbonation.

O - An enjoyable complex brew from Founders. Lots of flavors here, and they all work together well. This is a beer to sip and relax with.

mooseo, Jun 24, 2012
Photo of ilikebeer03
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a nice burnt orange / golden brown with about a finger of head. This recedes into a nice ring of foam around the edges with some lingering toward the center of the glass.

S: I get a dark fruits up front. Similar to the way a quad would smell. Also, some oak, and vanilla.

T: Tastes good. I get a slight oaky/vanilla. Again, some dark fruits with a malty / bread backbone. I also get some slight chocolate notes which become more apparent as the beer warms. Did not initially taste any alcohol, but again, as the beer warms, I very slightly feel the burn. A bit of dryness in the finish from the oak and the chocolate lingers. Raisins are present too. Though, not strongly; between low and medium.

M: Good mouth feel. Not overly carbonated. I am not overly familiar with the style, nor have I had many examples, but I like it. A slight dryness from the oak lingers.

O: This is a very good beer. I plan on drinking maybe one every 6 months to see how it changes. I don't know that it is worth the 12.99 I paid for the 4 pack.

Overall a delicious beer.

ilikebeer03, Apr 25, 2014
Photo of liquidcraft
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

dig the color, rich amber with an off white head that dissipated in a few minutes to film across the top of the beer. Couple of whiffs I pick up hints of caramel, vanilla and some gingery spice.

There is an initial bite of hops that comes back on the exhale but soothed midway by sweet caramel, molasses flavors. I'm getting through this faster than expected, the complexity makes each sip entertaining to dissect. The alcohol is disguised dangerously well. Smooth textures, carbonation struggles to get through the viscosity. As an old ale I find it over all very interesting, I wouldn't drink this with a meal its pretty filling and it's got a lot of flavors going on already.

liquidcraft, May 20, 2010
Photo of DrinkMoreBigBeers
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aged bottle with a date of 4/26/12.

A - Poured out a one finger off white head that dissapated fast. Appears well carbonated with small bubbles streaming up. It is a reddish brown color that really looks lovely when held up to the light and gets a nice reddish dark ruby color. Slight lacing left behind on the glass.

S - Can you say malt bomb with sweet caramel, butter scotch, vanilla, and oak barrels. Not detecting alcohol at this point on this one.

T - Taste follows the nose pretty well with tons of malts - starting with caramel sweetness, vanilla, alcohol, toffee, and slight oak barrels. Still a little more boozy then I would like at this point being 7 months old. Leave an aftertaste of the alcohol, might be better in another year or so. However, still a rather pleasant beer.

M - This one is full bodied and really soft in the mouth with a good amount of carbonation to keep the flavors moving through your palate.

O - This is probably my least favorite beer from Founders, in yet I still enjoy it. I just wish it was slightly less boozy in the aftertaste. I will age some more of this for another year and see if the alcohol dies off. Could be an awesome beer with a couple of years on it, we shall see. Cheers!

DrinkMoreBigBeers, Dec 03, 2012
Photo of anth0ny
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Curmudgeon from a bottle is a pretty deep red amber color, but light thin head and little lacing, which all goes away pretty quick. Smells *very* sweet. Smell is sweet honey caramel with some heat tingling the nose hairs. Very sweet taste. Honey is the dominant flavor, with traces of cream, caramel, sweet malt, and a touch of fruit. Quite complex. Sweetness is followed by booze for a hot finish. Very interesting overall flavor. Mouthfeel is warm and heavy, creamy-boozy, low carbonation. I like this beer. Not something I would get on the regular, but I'm definitely glad I tried it.

anth0ny, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of WanderingFool
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Founders Crumudgeon pours a slightly hazy dark copper color into the glass. A small off white head on top quickly fades away leaving a ring around the surface of the beer and some spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma is oak, vanilla, dark fruits like cherry or plum, orange peel and alcohol. Each sip of this full bodied beer is smooth and slightly chewy. Carbonation is low to moderate giving a tingle on the sides of the tongue.

The flavor is much like a barleywine without all the hops. Caramel malt, oak, dark fruit, vanilla and molasses dominate. Also present is a citrus flavor of orange peel. At the end alcohol flavors move in which gives the beer a very mild burn as it goes down the throat. Once gone the molasses and oak flavor lingers on the palate.

This is definitely a sipping beer that grows more complex in aroma and flavor as it warms.

WanderingFool, Mar 21, 2009
Photo of JayQue
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy orange color with a small white head. Head retention is less than average, fading quickly to a light covering and then a ring around the glass. No lacing. I read a few reviews and no one mentioned dark sediment. I hope I didn't just get a dirty bottle or poured it into a dirty glass.

Smell is impressive, mostly caramel malt, noticeable while the glass is still on the table and much stronger when held to the nose.

Taste is caramel malt with an additional sweet taste - either mollasses or maple syrup. There is also a little dark fruit and spices in the taste, with a light alcohol bite at the end.

Mouthfeel is rich and creamy. Drinkability is ok, between the high abv and the overall sweet taste and alcohol presence, this is a one-and-out nightcap type of beer.

JayQue, Jan 29, 2010
Photo of mklooster
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Reddish gold in color. Very pale head with moderate lacing.

S - Sweet, with a hint of sourness. It has hints of fig and dried cherry.

T - Slightly boozy, very malty. It doesn't taste as sweet as it smells, which, for me, is a good thing.

M - Just the right amount of carbonation - still nice and creamy.

O - A decent old ale. Not as good as 4D or Kaiser Curmudgeon, but still very drinkable .

mklooster, May 20, 2011
Photo of thedoubler55
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark shade of orange very murky, does not give off a good look at first.

S- The smell is somewhat spicy, kind of like a pumpkin ale but a little less kick

T- Very strong malt taste, I enjoyed it a bit, I have 2 aging in the fridge as we speak.(Since Dec 09')

M- Kind of thick, but a good filling feel to this beer.

D- This is definitely a slow sipping beer, not to be abused. A buddy of mine aged his for about 2 years and it tasted a lot different than my batch which had just been bought at the time.

thedoubler55, Nov 20, 2010
Photo of IronLover
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured with no head and a murky weathered copper color. Very thin wispy off white lacings lay on top after the pour. Sweet caramel malt, ripe apple, spice and oak aromas. Combined with the hint of alcohol, the smell is reminiscent of a light, sweet bourbon. Medium to full bodied with a thick mouth feel as the latent carbonation slowly comes to life. Sweet caramel malt and ripe apple flavors, hints of spice, finishes with an alcoholic burn and a pine hop flavor. Definitely a sipper that warms the soul.

IronLover, Dec 02, 2010
Photo of bnes09
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is my first old ale so I'm really not sure what to think going in. It pours a translucent orangish brown color with a creamy white head. Good head retention and some dots of lace.

Emits lots in intriguing aromas. Alcohol spice with a distinctive scotch quality. Sweet and caramely with just a touch of hops in the nose.

Flavors are even more complex. The most prominent is the hugely dynamic sweetness. I can honestly describe it as honey, caramel, brown sugar, maple and a touch of molasses each appearing at different times during the same sip. Hints of toffee and almond come to mind as well. There is a strange underlying flavor here that is very hard to pick out, it almost tastes like buttery, eggy, sugary cookie-dough, different but not necessarily bad. Mild piney and floral hops fight to be noticed. Solid alcohol spice dominates the finish and warms the throat.

Sticky on the tongue with a full-bodied, slightly syrupy mouthfeel. Fairly low carbonation, which seems to fit well.

One of the most interesting beers I have tried to date. It was bottled in 02/2010 giving it about 8 months to age. I would like to try it again both fresh and after aging at least 12 months. Enormous amount of malt flavor and aroma while hops do a nice job of keeping it interesting without dominating the senses. This one is definitely worth a try.

bnes09, Oct 25, 2010
Photo of Apellonious
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - pours a cloudy murky orangish red

S - I honestly can't tell if this beer is bad or not. At times, especially at the start, it smells bad, that it has turned.. Other times not. It smells malty, sugary, with faint alcohol.

T - buttery, malt, molasses, honey. spices, maybe nutmeg.

M - smooth, slippery.

O - I believe I had this beer once on tap in MN and was fascinated by it. The bourbon notes, the strange sweetness, the 10% heaviness.. I dont recall the odd off putting smell, though. Maybe chalk it up to too much light on the shelf life?

Above review- 12-18-2011

Below is the re-review- just got around to checking it out again. Bottled on 4/13/12.

A - more clear, but noticeable particulates. Little to no head, similar to first review, although I failed to mention it.

S - same as above, without the oft putting smell. Leads me to believe the last time I around I had a bad batch (a Total Wine more than random occurrence, unfortunately).

T - Same notes as above, though the butter and nutmeg seem more upfront. More bourbon notes come thorugh as well . Also no strange sourness.

M - same as above

O - I kept thinking I had to come back to this one, but for one reason or another (the bad original four pack most likely) I did not. Without the semi turned smell, it makes for a much better experience. This 4 pack was from Frougles. Recommended.

Apellonious, Jun 09, 2013
Photo of Brian700
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a nice brown with just a little bit of orangish tint to it. There is no real head to speak of, just a little bit of a ring around my glass.

The aroma is of sweet malt, mild moasses.

The flavor is of sweet malt, possibly Maris Otter. There is a mild barrel aged flavor to this beer along with some esters, caramel, and alcohol presence.

The mouthfeel is full bodied with medium carbonation.

This is a pretty drinkable beer but I would recommend aging this one out for a while. It isn't bad right now but I definately thing it would improve over time.

Brian700, Jul 23, 2006
Photo of jwinship83
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle purchased before it was supposed to be released. thanks glunz!

A- dark amber, almost ruby body with almost no head. what little there is is quite sticky.

S- malty and fruity. cherries, plums, and red grapes. a slight hint of alcohol. not as intense as i was expecting.

T- very sweet and fruity. very barleywine like. the alcohol taste is there for sure. warms the throat all the way down.

M- a little thin for what i was expecting. somewhat creamy.

D- great for a cold winter night indoors. not so good in the summer. one is probably enough. its pretty potent. ill be curious to see what this develops into.

jwinship83, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of mikereaser
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a murky dark brown color with little foam, just a layer of fine bubbles

S - aromas of caramel, brown sugar, overall a sweet smell

T - caramel sweetness with just a hint of alcohol that hits you later on

M/D - medium bodied brew that is very drinkable despite the ABV. The alcohol is present but doesn't overwhelm.

Reviewed again on 12/30/11 as part of the blind bif

A - poured from a short 12 oz. bottle, its a murky chestnut brown with a few soapy bubbles forming a ring around the glass but thats it
3
S - lots of plums and dark fruit in this one along with a sweet malt smell.
4
T - brown sugar, burnt toffee and caramel, a bit sweet with a nuttiness to it, I like it but its a bit too malty sweet for me.
3.5
M - smooth and creamy, with very light carbonation, a bit of a syrupy feel to it
3
D - it has a good flavor but becomes cloying to me after a while.
The impression i'm getting is that this is an aged beer, so i'll rip it open and see...

Founders Old Curmudgeon
hmm, I remember this not being a favorite of mine in the past, but its nice to try again. Its a twist off cap and there is an 07 on the bottle, is it an aged bottle?

Interesting second beer. I really want to tear into the next bottle but i don't know, first a 12% and now a 9.3%, I could be in some trouble, I like this!

mikereaser, Dec 15, 2008
Photo of kawilliams81
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage
Poured from a 12 oz bottle into Alesmith Horny Devil snifter.

A- pours a cloudy orang with a very thin yellow head. Lots of sediment in suspension. Thin ring of lacing atop the beer.

S- bunt sugar, toffe, leather, cinnamon.

T- very sweet toffe, burnt sugar, earthiness, slight citrus and some bitterness.

M- medium body and carbonation. Slight acidity and spice lingers in the aftertaste.

O- good but has not gotten better with age IMO. Would have liked to do a side by side to compare a new curmudgeons.

kawilliams81, May 08, 2012
Photo of xnicknj
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

on tap at RnH in nyc. served in a tulip glass.

Pours a syrupy clouded burnt orange color with darker brown hues. A thinner white head fades quickly, leaving a faint layer of film and hardly any lacing.

Plenty of burnt sugar in the nose with caramel, thick breadyness, and molasses. Softer fruit flavors and lighter hop bitterness with an alcohol flair.

Begins with a bite of hop bitterness, quickly followed by layers of syrupy sweetness. Burnt sugar, caramel, and molasses all swirl together for a fairly rich, sweet base. Thick malts with boozy warmth. Another note of pine hoppiness towards the finish with some more heat.

Full bodied, lighter carbonation, sticky and syrupy on the tongue. Drinks pretty well, although its definitely a bit on the warm and sweet side of things.

xnicknj, Mar 08, 2011
Photo of ybnorml
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clean dark amber beer. Has a small off white head. There is a sweet candy toffee note that dominates the aroma hiding a hint of alcohol in the background. The sweet toffee note hits the tip of your tongue while the alcohol sweeps over the middle. The finish has a coffee/tobacco character and then the toffee and alcohol join hands for a smooth aftertaste.

ybnorml, Jan 05, 2009
Photo of bpw28
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: One finger bone white-very light tan head that died off fast, lacing is spotty, a hazy copper color (about a 23 SRM), pretty steady stream of carb.

Smell: Fresh dark fruits (plum, maybe fig), oaky, light dried lemon skin, nice sweet grass note, light alcohol

Taste: Grassy- earthy notes on the tongue, black pepper, strong woody, dark fruits, light coffe/roasty malt on the mid, alcohol is makes its presence but not overpowering, semi-dry finish. Body is medium.

Final Thoughts: Good beer. I've kind of hyped this one up and heard about it alot so I'm a bit let down that it didn't blow me away, but it is pretty good on the overall level. I know they tried to tone down the body to give it more "drinkability" but it just feels unnatural for me. A definite try, but I wouldn't go nuts looking. Maybe some age would make this a really outstanding brew.

bpw28, May 22, 2012
Photo of MbpBugeye
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- No head to speak of, instead you get a thin film that floats atop a clouded deep red beer with lots of floaties in suspension.

S- I can already tell this is going to be a malt bomb. The nose is full of sweet malts. Dark fruits, raisins, cherries, currants and alcohol.

T- Same story as the smell. Malty and sweet. Cherries, butterscotch and raisins are noted. There is a slight bite of hops and alcohol on the back.

M- Almost no carbonation. Its really thick, syrupy and smooth.

D- This is a sipper for me. The alcohol is there. This beer is just too chewy to make it possible to have more than one.

This is a pretty good beer. Nice and full bodied and warming.

MbpBugeye, Nov 10, 2009
Photo of thryn
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep copper. High clarity. No head, but a halo of loose foam forms.

I'm getting raisin, molasses and vanilla in the nose. Alcohol is not prominent. It is an inviting, appealing scent, but nothing oustanding.

The taste is a bit more complex than the nose. Very sweet, with a nice kick of bourbony booze as well. Same dark fruit, molasses and vanilla notes as the nose, but somehow more striking on the palate. Caramel as well The alcohol heat and taste provides a nice punch up front, then fades, giving room for the sweet caramel taste to shine. The finish is slightly bitter.

Medium to thick body -- more viscosity than I expected for how translucent this brew is. Slightly dry. Nice feel.

It's a good example of style and quite drinkable if you like the style.

thryn, Aug 12, 2009
Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 3,695 ratings.