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Founders Blushing Monk - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Blushing MonkFounders Blushing Monk

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

961 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 961
Reviews: 439
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 11.53%
Wants: 447
Gots: 286 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Essentially an "Imperial Rübæus," this ale contains four times the amount of raspberries as Rübæus and is fermented with a Belgian yeast strain.

(Beer added by: granger10 on 09-15-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 961 | Reviews: 439 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sholland119
4/5  rDev -5.9%

A-Pours a slightly murky raspberry red (duh, I guess) with a thin pinkish white head that subsides quickly, leaving a foamy ring.

S-Smell is dominated by raspberry (duh, again) with a bit of a tangy hint of citrus and graininess in the background. Intriguing.

T-A nice combination of sweet and tangy, like an alcoholic sweet-tart, but in a good way. Fruity sweetness in the front, a nice pungent acidity in the back.

M-Pretty dry and almost puckering, with fine bubbles of carbonation.

D-This actually goes down really well for the ABV. Alcohol is well, almost dangerously well masked.

Didn't know what to expect of this one. It makes a nice big brother to the Rubaeus.


sholland119, Sep 17, 2008
Photo of number1bum
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%

Pours a somewhat hazy, pure scarlet red color, with really no head at all. Some bubbles is about it, but the red is really beautiful and deep. 2nd pour did produce a little bit of pink head, but it quickly faded and didn't leave any stick.

Smell is pure raspberries. Not sure what else to say. Really pleasant, and comes off slightly sweet, too.

Taste is also dripping with raspberry flavor. It's slightly sour but there is some sweetness to it, as well. It's tart and gets to be slightly harsh through the finish - it puckers your mouth just like a fresh raspberry does, really. There is some earthy yeast flavor that hits right at the midpoint and adds a bit of complexity, but this is really all about the raspberries, which are showcased beautifully. Rapsberry flavor takes back over into the finish and I'm left feeling as though I've just eaten a small handful of fresh berries. Amazing. The earthy quality gets a bit more prominent as it warms.

This has a medium/full body and is quite smooth for being slightly tart. It's somewhat dry through the finish.

This is certainly not something I would drink with any regularity, and in fact I would probably share a bottle next time. But this is really an impressive beer that I would gladly have again.

number1bum, Sep 06, 2008
Photo of Kempleton
3.83/5  rDev -9.9%

Poured into a Smuttynose Big beer tulip. Reddish brown slightly hazy appearance. White bubbly head quickly disipates to a slick with ring of bubbles. When shaken up and swirled halfway through the head comes back but it is more foamy than at first. Smells like raspberries, raspberries, raspberries. At first this is all I can smell and I can smell it from acroos the room. After a bit some alcoholic sweetness pokes into the nose and almost a banana scent. As it warms more, the cloying sweetness becomes more pronounced. Tastes like raspberries and a bit of tartness, this is definitly more sweet than tart. Has a bubbly mouthfeel at first upon a bit of swiling the bubbly mouthfeel moves toward a thick, syrupy, sweeter mouthfeel. As this warms up the alcohol which was previously well hidden starts to become barely evident especially deep in the nose. Overall I think this has too much fruit sweetness for what it is. Not an easy drinker for me.

Kempleton, Aug 25, 2008
Photo of DrDogbeer
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%

Poured from the bottle into a tulip. Pours a beautiful hazy pinkish red with a light pink head. Smells like rasberry sorbet! Great aroma!
Tastes like fresh rasberries and it is very refreshing. I have no idea that this beer is high octane! Masks it wonderfully. Good crisp mouthfeel- not as syruppy as I would expect. Pretty darn drinkable for a fruity beer as well.

DrDogbeer, Aug 14, 2008
Photo of grandq
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%

From recently found old review (around Feb i think)

A - Ruby almost amber
S - RASPBERRY. like sticking your nose in a freshly picked bushel. very fresh, nothing fake/syrupy. Slight yeasty
T - sweet raspberries puckering into a tartness that morphs into grapefruit on the dry finish
M - impressive - creamy and threatens to become syrupy but the carbonation lifts it off the tongue just in time.
D - very drinkable - tastes like spiked punch, but not very many identifiable beerlike qualities. I got a little bit of wheaty berliner weiss flavor somewhere in there, but not very evident. A good drink but not a great beer, massively overpriced. Trying Rubaus soon

grandq, Aug 03, 2008
Photo of BMoney575
3.7/5  rDev -12.9%

Sampled on 7-6-08

Pours a cloudy red/pink, with a bubbly white head that settles to a thin layer. Big rings of lacing line the sides of the glass.

Smell is super raspberry, with a little bit of Belgian peeking through. Very tart and very strong.

Taste is very tart raspberry, with an odd sour, vegetable aftertaste. After a few sips, you can tell that the sourness comes from the alcohol, which you can't really taste.

Mouthfeel is good, very thick with low carbonation.

Drinkability is so-so, very sour with not much else.

Overall, not as good as a Rubeaus, and not worth the money.

BMoney575, Jul 06, 2008
Photo of Gavage
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%

Appearance: pours a lovely clear ruby red color with a 1/2" head. Some sparse lacing develops.

Smell: berry sweetness is very pleasant.

Taste: raspberries, bits of yeast, and a mild bitterness is wrapped in a very soft alcohol flavor. There is a mellow tartness near the finish.

Mouthfeel: very dry throughout. Surprisingly short aftertaste despite the big flavor. Medium bodied beer.

Drinkability: this is a fairly unique beer IMHO, but this is one of those one bottle per session beers despite the great flavor.

Gavage, Jun 13, 2008
Photo of tdrshayden
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%

I've had this bottle for quite some time and finally decided to drink it.
pours a deep red in color with very little head. Robust raspberry aromas with a bitter. fresh floral aroma with raspberries dominating.
The flavor is very mellow, heavy flavors of fresh raspberries, and a very tart background.
The finish is very tart and lingers for a bit.
Quite an interesting beer, not sure it is worth the price of a case but certainly as a single bottle purchase.

tdrshayden, Jun 13, 2008
Photo of ThatWineGuy
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%

My Michigan stock acquired at Merchants in Dearborn last October is diminishing, time to drop by there soon! This was enjoyed in one of biegaman's Affligem glasses right after we finished the Rubaeus that Viggo gave me.

Thin head settled quickly, darker red than the Rubaeus, more like a raw cranberry juice. The aroma was pretty heady I thought: a strong black cherry smell that gave way to a yeasty odour and then a pink grapefruit flush. The taste was balanced and pleasant with tart, over ripe fruit, muted acidity and teasing tartness counter balanced with the sweetness of a european honey. Both this and the Rubaeus are raspberry-based and this is like the higher-alcohol big brother to it with a more substantial mouthfeel and texture. The only slight distraction, I thought, was a more abrupt after taste, possibly the malt following on the heels of a very pronounced raspberry-beer experience. The high alcohol is very well hidden, I would never have guessed this was over 12%. Highly recommended.

ThatWineGuy, Jun 03, 2008
Photo of biegaman
4.65/5  rDev +9.4%

650ml bomber, ABV listed as 12.3%
Purchased November '07 at Merchant's Fine Wine in Dearborn, MI and enjoyed June '08 with a huge, gracious thanks to ThatWineGuy !!!

Blushing Monk appears quite murky, a bold and dense fuchsia in colour, but has a wonderful glow when held up to the light. A few thin, light pink hued sheets of lace encircle its top. Especially pretty and distinct even as fruit beers go (they typically have unique and colourful appearances).

Smelling the aroma is akin to taking a whiff of fruit yogurt; it is slightly funky with a chunky fruit character. Raspberry yogurt - not juice, concentrate, or the fruit itself - but a true, cultured yogurt is the closest in describing it. There are strong hints of cherry and strawberry as well.

The alcohol was initially dangerously indiscreet, but with warming, came forward a little more. The carbonation and bitterness are both minimal. The sweetness is resounding and leaves a sugary feeling on the lips. The taste is a bit of a marvel to me...

In many ways it reminds me of Polish cherry brandy. More so, however, this is what I'd imagine might result from mixing pounds of fruit to traditional Polish meads (think Jadwiga, Kurpiowski). There is an unmistakable taste (and sweetness) of honey that blends heavenly with the raspberries. Prestigious mead meets basket after basket of fruit is how I taste this beer.

I was impressed by the Founders Rübæus, but this is something else. I don't believe I've ever tasted a fruit beer quite like this. Granted, I can't exclude fruit-lambics which are another thing altogether, but this too is special enough to be put in a category of its own; at 12.3%, Blushing Monk is an incredibly unique beer, one which will stand out in my memory for some time.

biegaman, Jun 03, 2008
Photo of beachbum1975
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%

Got this one on a trade with Peanut from Dilly Deli last month.

Appearance: I've heard a lot about this beer, and loved Founder's Rübæus, so I thought it was time to give this a try. No freshness date, poured into a chalice at around 42 degrees and shared it with a couple BA buddies. Dark pink with an off-white pinkish head that didn't linger long.

Smell: Rich, naturally sweetened brew of raspberries (and maybe a hint of strawberry?)with a modest amount of malts. Sweet, sweet, sweet. Yum.

Taste: Moderately thick and rich. Nice splash of raspberries, wheat in the middle with a semi-dry finish. Little to know alcohol bite detected.

Mouthfeel: Thick, rich and syrupy with ample carbonation. At 12.3 % abv, this one is definitely a sipper.

Drinkability: Superb sipper/aperitif . If you like raspberries, grab a few friends and crack one. Highly recommended, sweet fruit beer.

beachbum1975, Jun 01, 2008
Photo of errantnight
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Well, I still haven't had the Raspberry Tart from New Glarus (or the Rubaeus, although I hope to change that, in both cases), but this is right up there with Wisconsin Belgian Red for me when it comes to fruit beers.

Pours a rich, somewhat viscous brilliant red. Excellent clarity, with a thin but fluffy head. Color is just great. Looks like a raspberry wine (wait... I think those two statements are contradictory...)

Aroma showcases the raspberry all over the place. A hint of caramel sweetness undertones it. No hop aroma.

Taste is a perfect balance of pure raspberry flavor (very non-candy like), malty undertones, a bit of a banana, bubble gum Belgian yeast character rounding things together, and a crispness that isn't quite bitter, but lifting off the tongue. Firmly tart, but not overly sour and funky. Almost a vinous character. Carbonation is not spritzy, but contributes to the clean mouthfeel.

A great sipper, I'm sure this would make for some excellent dessert pairings, or perhaps some appetizers.

Expensive, to be sure, but it's not often you see a brewery nail a beer like this. Find it, try it.

errantnight, May 10, 2008
Photo of philbe311
4.7/5  rDev +10.6%

A - Deep red copper... Slight lace dances on top... Coats the glass exceptionally well...

S - Sweet raspberry... Possibly a tad tart as well...

T - Raspberries and more raspberries... Very reminiscent of a flanders oud bruin or flanders red ale... Sweey yet tart... Delightful...

M - Coats well... SLight tartness dances on tongue and excites the palette... Smooth...

D - Epic... Definitely to be sipped and slowly enjoyed... Awesome...

Note - The 2011 bottling is every bit as good as the original

philbe311, May 03, 2008
Photo of IBUnit63
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%

From bomber to Cab glass-label indicates 12.3 ABV...

Deep, translucent raspberry color with minimalist pink head. Not huge visible carbonation at all.

All raspberries, all the time. A little horse blanket feel.

Wow-copious but mild raspberries. Horse blanket feel comes out here as well. No unnatural feel at all. Well-balanced-a little carbonation tingle.

Decent tangy citrus-a small bite from carbonation. The blanket o' horse actually provides a nice mild, warming finish. Slight tin on the aftertaste.

Quite enjoyable as an occassional sipper. Very natural feel to this. Early gateway to more funky lambics?

IBUnit63, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.3/5  rDev +1.2%

"As blushing will sometimes make a whore pass for a virtuous woman, so modesty may make a fool seem a man of sense."

--Jonathan Swift

Fluorescent raspberry with dark coral edges and a cherry blossom pink head. The lovely looking crown is much larger and much more persistent than expected given the 12.3% ABV. Not only that, but thick-sticky sheets of lace begin to form as the foam begins to melt. This is pretty much how an Imperial raspberry fruit beer should look.

This big ale might have four times the amount of raspberries as Rubaeus, but the aroma isn't four times as powerful. Having said that, I like the raspberry fruitiness because it's made more complex by a certain muskiness and a hint of Belgian yeastiness. Amazingly, there's no hint of alcohol.

Blushing Monk is everything that a bigger Rubaeus should be. It contains much more malt (and probably some candi sugar besides), is sweeter, and is more raspberry-like. It might have double the berry flavor, but not triple... and certainly not quadruple. It's stunning how incredibly well-buried the alcohol is.

The flavor profile is dominated by an explosion of juicy raspberry pulp swimming in liquid sugar and an earthy yeastiness that allows the beer to find another gear at the midway point of each mouthful. Using a neutral ale yeast strain wouldn't have worked nearly as well. It still isn't as complex as an expertly-crafted Belgian ale, but it sure is tasty.

Sweet leads the way, tart-tangy follows close behind, and bitter finishes a distant third. Even though Rubaeus's dry, snappy finish is fine, this finish is more my speed since the flavor is allowed to get comfortable before slowly oozing away. The taste score will be rounded up rather than down because the Monk continues to become deeper and more complex as it warms.

Whenever I can't immediately come up with a way to improve any given beer's mouthfeel, it earns an automatic 4.5. Such is the case here. It's full enough without being too full and is sticky enough without being too sticky. An ideal amount of carbonation (gentle) helps as well.

Founders has every right to be proud of Blushing Monk. They've nailed the essence of a big raspberry fruit beer and they've picked the perfect name (considering the appearance and the ingredients). This isn't a beer that I'd drink often, especially at $15.39 per bomber, but it's a delicious treat that will ease me into the evening with style.

BuckeyeNation, Apr 20, 2008
Photo of Overlord
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%

A thousand and one blessings upon the house of RoyMunson for sharing his largesse with yours truly.

Pours a sparkling red ... looks like cranberry juice. Some pink foam that quickly vanishes. Maybe some slight bubbling. Mouthfeel is, nevertheless, light and refreshing despite its flavorful content and high ABV.

The smell is raspberry, some funk, and a bit of citrusy zest. The taste is pure raspberries. Deliciously sour with some residual sweetness, maybe just a hint of yeast and malt backing, but overwhelmingly redolent with delicious fruit.

Wonderful, and it belongs up there with Belgian Red and Raspberry Tart from New Glarus. It is dangerously, dangerously drinkable. I had to triple check the ABV.

Overlord, Apr 20, 2008
Photo of Deuane
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%

A-WOW!, like raspberry purée, a deep ruby-red-purple with a medium pinkish-purple head that reduced to a ring and left some lace.

S-Fresh pressed raspberry juice, with the awesome combo of sweet and sour notes. The smell is simply outstanding.

T-Strong raspberry juice. Of course there is malt used in this beer but all it does is support the raspberries! This is a really wonderful fruit beer...and you best like the natural sweet/sourness of raspberries to enjoy this beer.

M-Rübaeus on roids...hello Balco! This somewhat sticky medium bodied brew is all about the fruit!

D-This is 12.3%...your kidding! A great sipper for sure. This is the beer equivalent to a wine aperitif...a truly well done brew. Certainly not for everyone but for those that like raspberries...wonderful!

Deuane, Apr 13, 2008
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%

This beer will serve two wonderful milestones for me. It is the 800th beer I've tried and the 300th beer I've reviewed on BeerAdvocate.

A short lived one three finger head is almost pink in color, which I found quite appropriate for the style. Body is a very deep burgundy. Nose is full of purreed raspberries, rugbarb, and a prequil of sweet tartness. A long creamy tartness is actually silky as you take first sip. A minerally vegetable laced sweet and sour battle ingages on the back of the tongue. This has been called a bigger version of Rubeaus, but this really is its own unique brew. Twords the end of the palate you get a distinct bit of dryness that really balances out the tartness. There really is a lot of complexity going on within the palate of this beer. Alchol is completely hidden. Mouthfeel is fruity dry thick tartness. An exceptionally drinkable sipper.

SPLITGRIN, Mar 27, 2008
Photo of Floydster
3.53/5  rDev -16.9%

22 ounce bottle purchased for about fifteen dollars, listed at 12.1% ABV, split with girlfriend two nights ago, poured into my New Beglium snifter

A-Color is a mixture between purple and red, 1/2 inch head that was pink and very bubbly, settled almost immediately, no retention or lacing

S-Raspberry juice, lots of booze, sugar, sour candy, Beglian yeast, funkiness, bready malt aromas, some sour notes, and berry syrup

T-Started off sweet and calm like I remember Lindeman's raspberry brew being, then after a few sips, the alcohol really started to shine through and each sip got harder to get down, got syrupy when the carbonation died down, definitely tasted better cold, tons of raspberries the entire time, malt was barely recognizable, had some wine-like finishes at times, tasted strongest towards the end and had to start eating some peanuts to get it down

M-Sweet and strong mouthfeel, definitely felt the hot alcohol on the tongue, lingered too, body is medium to thick, could have used a little more carbonation

D-Could not have finished the bottle by myself, six to eight ounces was just right, alcohol is not fully hidden, high percentage of alcohol, not very smooth

Tasted a lot like a framboise to me, still pretty tasty for a fruit beer with that much alcohol, interesting brew and would not necessarily expect this from Founders, would drink again if given the chance, recommended

Floydster, Mar 21, 2008
Photo of grub
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%

22oz bottle. sampled feb 29/08. bottle indicates 12.3% abv.

pours a beautiful crystal clear purplish ruby colour with a small fluffy pink head. the head drops fairly fast and leaves a bit of spotty lace.

aroma is excellent. tons of fruit and berry. loads of raspberry dominating. touch of sour cherry. hints of dark fruit too. light alcohol. a touch of sweetness that makes me think of grenadine. seems like there's a little belgian funk in there too, with a little leather, tobacco, and just a hint of barnyard. light cracker malt. smell makes me think of a cross between raspberry tart and wisconsin belgian red.

taste is great. tons of raspberry. a bit of cherry. light alcohol, more as warmth than flavour. very low bitterness level. light sweetness. nice sourness and just a touch of funk. bready malt. bit of cracker. bit of leather again. i can see hints of lambic in here, but the focus is definitely on the fruit.

mouthfeel is good. medium carbonation level. medium body. it has a bit of that funky belgian mouthfeel too, but not to the level in your typical lambic.

drinkability is good. the fruit is very prominent without being overly sweet. there's a touch of sweetness there to help balance things out, but not too much. the alcohol is mostly hidden, aside from the pleasant warming that starts on the way down and spreads outward from there. a great dessert beer that can be enjoyed by beer geeks and non-geeks alike.

grub, Mar 01, 2008
Photo of akorsak
3.9/5  rDev -8.2%

A 650 mL bottle purchased a Capone's during one of the Connoisseur tasting nights.

A: Tbe beer pours like raspberry purée, a deep red-purple hybrid that is dark enough to be opaque. Little head bubbled up on pour and there really isn't much more to say about it.

S: The nose is all raspberry juice, sweet with touches of natural sour raspberry flavor.

T: The taste is strong, concentrated with raspberry juice. A grainy malt body, whose sole purpose is to support the raspberry, does an admirable job. The raspberry has a sugary sweetness that, at times, reverts to a more natural tart raspberry. The alcohol, sizeable in the ale, is well hidden. A nice sipper but the sweetness can overpower.

M: I hope that you like raspberries. This is Rübæus on speed, riled and amped up. The sporadic tartness saves the taste and prevents it from meandering into Lindeman's framboise territory (not a putdown on Lindeman's, simply an observation).

D: The alcohol is nicely masked. The beer is a good sipper that veers dangerously close to cloying but never quite gets there.

akorsak, Feb 25, 2008
Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%

Home Run!
Founders hit it out of the park with this one. Pours a raspberry red in color with some nice carbonation bubbles filling the top of the glass. Smell is tart raspberries. Taste is much the same. Amazing enough, I didn't tire of it by the end of the bomber. This is a very easy drinker, you get no hints of the 12.3% ABV. This was a real treat.

FtownThrowDown, Feb 24, 2008
Photo of Lothore
4.08/5  rDev -4%

A- Pours a deep red color with little to no head.

S- Smell is very sweet, predominately raspberries with light bready notes.

T- Starts off very sweet, raspberries and moves into a tart, astringent, dry, citrusey flavor and ends with an off flavor some people have characterized as "band-aid" but I think it is just the alcohol masked by some of the other flavors which creates a bit of an undesirable tone.

M- Very dry, crisp, thick with quite a bit of carbonation.

D- Definitely a desert beer, for the 12 percent alcohol this one is extremely drinkable. It doesn't quite measure up to raspberry tart but it's hard to hold that against it.

Lothore, Feb 24, 2008
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%

Dark vivid maroon hued pour with a skim layer of white cap.

Bright berry fruit aroma. Sweetness abounds. Tart apple nose.

First swigs: Sharp granny smith apple, cranberry with a sour twist of lemon. Fruit aspects are all over.

Feel is totally easy on the ole tongue. This could be an every day beer in a second.

Last swigs: Cranberry and apple 12% brew that slides back.

Beer is good. Happy beering.

blitheringidiot, Feb 23, 2008
Photo of tayner
3.63/5  rDev -14.6%

22 oz bottle thanks to leftmindedrighty

Poured into my warsteiner flute glass.

raspberry color (go figure) that fizzed more like a champagne than beer, left little to no head

Smelled of raspberries and nothing much else

Tasted like a wine cooler, or a raspberry champagne. slightly tart but by no means sour, more crisp raspberry wine cooler-ish. If i didnt know what it was i would never in my life believe it was a belgian beer!

It was light and fizzy, went down easy because of that.

Drinkability.. well, for what it is, it is easy to drink. This would make a good sunday brunch beverage or something to use for a toast on new years eve or a celebration of some sort, but beyond that i could not see this as a beer to settle down and drink for an evening, mainly because it does not taste like beer

tayner, Feb 23, 2008
Founders Blushing Monk from Founders Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 961 ratings.