1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Founders Backwoods Bastard - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Backwoods BastardFounders Backwoods Bastard

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,279 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,279
Reviews: 1,425
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 10.62%
Wants: 656
Gots: 1,544 | FT: 143
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Scotch Ale aged in bourbon barrels.

(Beer added by: CortexBomb on 01-30-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Founders Backwoods Bastard Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,279 | Reviews: 1,425 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of udubdawg


4/5  rDev -7.6%

08-23-2014 03:20:49 | More by udubdawg
Photo of jeonseh


3.35/5  rDev -22.6%

A - Brown with a bit of a golden tint to it; small nearly non existent head sits on top.

S - Smoky peat mixed with hint of vanilla and oaky; slight hint of maraschino cherry

T - a bit smoky with hints of oak mixed in; roasted malt comes out as well as a bit of bitterness that hangs on the back; Rather rough flavor profile as the beer seems to want to rip your mouth apart; you can feel the strong bitter flavor ebb and flowing along your palate; nice spiciness comes in on the back side every once and awhile. this is one beer that became much noticablely better when it warmed up . Hints of oak and vanilla increased with the strong bitterness seemed to mellow out.

MF - Has a good bit of tingle to it as it just really makes your toungle tingly; this last for a while; the beer itself is a bit thin for my taste and the style

D - Overall, i wasn't too impressed by this one. It was sort of rough in the mouth and the flavor profile wasn't anything too special. I really didn't care for how the peat, bitterness and oaky spicness came together. They just didn't seem to blend right as one area was always a bit out of whack. We'll see what time does for it but i wasn't too impressed.

11-01-2008 02:29:25 | More by jeonseh
Photo of fehrminator

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

04-05-2013 17:08:16 | More by fehrminator
Photo of _morandi_


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

07-14-2014 19:50:22 | More by _morandi_
Photo of lonewolfcry


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

11-02-2013 05:26:45 | More by lonewolfcry
Photo of juliusseizure

New York

4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

01-26-2012 17:59:18 | More by juliusseizure
Photo of zac16125

South Carolina

4.43/5  rDev +2.3%

12oz bottle into a snifter
2012 Vintage

I rarely comment on bottles/labels, but man is that guy on the front creepy. Anyways...

A: Pours a thin appearing, very dark cherry wood color with ruby tones when held up to the light. A ring of tan head builds and quickly fades. Leaves effectively no lacing, and only very faint alcohol legs. Pretty color though.

S: Big aroma, with fresh oak, dark fruits, a touch of smoke, bourbon, nutty, vanilla cake batter. The aroma is very sweet. This is excellent.

T: The first sip is dark fruits up front and huge bourbon notes on the finish. I also get oak, a touch of bitterness, unsweetened black tea, candied pecans. I really appreciate how strong the bourbon notes are. Very well done.

M/D: Carbonation is minimal, which is appropriate. Medium bodied, but a touch thin for my liking. ABV is restrained and plays well with the palate profile. Warming as it goes down. A slow sipper, but drinkability is good.

O: Overall, this is excellent. I had heard good things, and this did not disappoint. It seems like everytime Founders puts a beer in a bourbon barrel they hit a home run. I highly recommend and will certainly drink this one again.

11-13-2012 01:15:34 | More by zac16125
Photo of mattparsons

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -7.6%

01-24-2013 00:04:41 | More by mattparsons
Photo of JustinMatthew


5/5  rDev +15.5%

12-08-2011 05:59:52 | More by JustinMatthew
Photo of dstc


4.7/5  rDev +8.5%

Pours a thick looking cloudy brown with a slight orange tint. Has a small tan head that falls to nothing but a rim. Not really any lace.

Real nice fruity malt nose. Smells like deep red fruits, plums, raisins. Alcohol is present. Smells awesome.

Taste mimics aroma. Nice and sweet. Fruit taste is nice and backed by big alcohol. Just wonderful.

Medium to full in the mouth with a slight alcohol bite.

This beer is truly awesome. Love it.

01-09-2010 14:10:30 | More by dstc
Photo of speedvagen


3.5/5  rDev -19.2%

02-24-2013 22:40:29 | More by speedvagen
Photo of Mark000


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

11-23-2011 17:53:25 | More by Mark000
Photo of stewart124


4/5  rDev -7.6%

My bottle says it's 10.2%. Whoa!

It pours a hazy amber to burgundy with a decent tan head.

The first hint I pick up on is of course bourbon and a vanilla. There are traces of dark caramalized malts and that figgy/tobacco character.

The taste is quite smooth and finishes with an almost peppery note. It's got some spice and tingles my throat. This is a bit thicker than I envisioned and it's quite delicious. There is a nice spice to this and I'm wondering if that is the bourbon barrel or some hops additions. Lots of caramel sweetness and a slight roasted character.

The mouthfeel is medium-full and the finish still has that spicy bite. The alcohol is fairly hidden and the the tobacco seems to come out as the beer warms.

04-03-2009 00:57:40 | More by stewart124
Photo of seaoflament


3.98/5  rDev -8.1%

Thanks to northertimber for this one!

Pours a dark amber color, a bit muddy. Not too much head, maybe a quarter inch but it quickly recedes to the skinniest ring. It also pours a little like syrup.

Lots of caramel and dark fruits with hints of vanilla and oak in the background. I'm picking up some scents of raisins soaked in rum, ripe figs, dates, and lots of toasted bread. The beer seems a bit too cold so I'll let it warm up a few more minutes and I should be able to pick up more aromas. The fruit aromas intensify as it warms up as well as some brown sugar, hints of red cherries, and caramelized fruits. The bourbon works very well with the malt profile and tying together the caramel and fruits.

A little hot in the first sip but not too bad. Raisins and dried plums are intense with a sugary residue in the finish. The toasted malt and caramel quickly follows with a lactic sweetness as well. Vanilla and oak finish with hints of diacetyl and butterscotch. Slight smoky flavors in the aftertaste as well as a dry grape flavor and a bit of chocolate.

Fairly creamy texture with a good amount of carbonation but just a tad of a numbing sensation on the tongue and some alcoholic heat in the finish.

Quite a good beer actually. This is not a style I'm too fond of but the oak bourbon ageing gave this one some more dimension.

03-22-2008 20:58:06 | More by seaoflament
Photo of Gtreid


4.08/5  rDev -5.8%

12 oz. bottle purchased at Discount Liquor in the Mke. Poured into my CCB tulip.

A: Rich, brown color. The pour creates a small half inch light, kahki head that leaves a little spotty lace.

A: Burbon, vanilla, and caramel. Pretty sweet. The burbon really takes center stage in the nose. I get a very pronouces earthiness as well.

T: Pretty nice. The burbon is not overwhelming but you know it's there. The sweetness is in the form of the vanilla and caramel. I also get a small chocolate flavor. It finishes smooth and tangy.

M: As with most barrel aged brews, the mouthfeel is slick and smooth. Pretty low carbonation levels, heavy body.

D and overall impression: Drinkability is above average for the style, the high ABV with the burbon will limit it some. Overall, I am very pleased with this brew. The barrel did its job here, very solid, and recommended. Skal.

01-09-2010 20:09:52 | More by Gtreid
Photo of ajs4bd


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

07-13-2012 17:01:20 | More by ajs4bd
Photo of aorloski


4.03/5  rDev -6.9%

Fresh Bottle

Appearance - Beautiful maroon / dark red, barely a head on it and what is there disappears rather quickly. Alcohol sticking to the glass, great lacing.

Smell - BOURBON, seriously in your face. It kind of smells like i just smelled a shot of jim beam, but it is pretty balanced. A nice warm vanilla undertone to move you through the bourbon smell. You can smell the wood and definitely reminiscent of a scotch ale. Smells amazing

Taste - Definitely follows the nose, bourbon, vanilla, oak, deep deep malts and dark fruits. It tastes a little hot right now but this is a pretty fresh bottle.

Mouthfeel - thick and chewy, little carbonation. nice for this style

Overall - I had this beer for the first time when it had a year on it and i was absolutely blown away. I think i prefer this beer with more age on it. When i found out my local shop had it i went and bought three 4 packs because thats how much i loved it when i first had it. However, the newer bottle tastes a lot different than an aged one. I really wanted to review this one higher, i should have taken notes on the first one. But honestly this is a spectacular brew.

10-27-2011 23:19:41 | More by aorloski
Photo of schmidtmattsays


4/5  rDev -7.6%

11-11-2013 03:48:52 | More by schmidtmattsays
Photo of lakersfan16


5/5  rDev +15.5%

11-18-2011 23:46:26 | More by lakersfan16
Photo of huntermop

South Carolina

4/5  rDev -7.6%

06-25-2014 20:05:54 | More by huntermop
Photo of ncvbc

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -7.6%

07-26-2014 23:52:25 | More by ncvbc
Photo of VaTechHopHead

4.65/5  rDev +7.4%

A - Nice mix of deep red and brown, clearly unfiltered, with an off-white head. Good chunks of lace down the glass left by a fast depleting head.

S - The first nose is like sticking your nose in a bourbon barrel...sweet and pungent bourbon with a great malty backbone. Hops aren't too prevalent because the other aromas dominate.

T - This is where this beer really shines. Starts off with wonderful sweet malty mash flavors but the bourbon kicks in real quick. The bourbon isn't harsh or hot at all but amazingly pleasant, it's all the flavor and none of the burn. Right at the end the hops pop in and their bitterness blends with the bourbon nicely to give a great spicy finish

M/D - Heavy body with some large carbonation bubbles but somehow still smooth on the tongue. Sweet finish but has a nice alcohol warmth. Way too easy to drink for such a high alcohol content.

For a widely available seasonal beer this one is terrific and definitely a must try for all big beer lovers.

02-23-2010 02:54:33 | More by VaTechHopHead
Photo of BlackBelt5112203


4.55/5  rDev +5.1%

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter at cellar temperature.

L – Ruby-brown color with a 1.5-finger rocky, frothy, tan head. Awesome retention and some great lacing. Clear as far as I can tell.

S – Tons of caramel with touches of brown sugar, raisins, smoke, and vanilla and bourbon-tinged oak. This smells fantastic.

T – The taste almost follows the nose to a tee. It starts off sweet with caramel, vanilla, brown sugar, and dark fruits with spicy smoke following close behind. Slightly hot and astringent (but not in a bad way!) bourbon-soaked oak is very apparent toward mid-taste-to-finish. There’s the difference between the aroma and taste right there – the bourbon is much more prevalent.

S – Medium-to-full-bodied with pretty good carbonation, a sticky and chewy mouthfeel, and a sweet, slightly spicy, and very dry finish. Bourbon heat and dryness linger nicely. There’s definitely a strong throat-warming presence from the alcohol here.

O – This is a delicious beer. It has all the key elements of a good Scotch ale with the added bonus of bourbon barrels. Furthermore, it is extremely drinkable, especially for the 10.2% ABV. The warming sensation from the alcohol is strong but really quite pleasant. This may be one of my favorite beers from Founders and may certainly be my favorite Scotch ale. I might also add that this is by FAR my favorite bourbon barrel-aged beer that I’ve had so far. I highly recommend this beer.

02-01-2013 03:55:46 | More by BlackBelt5112203
Photo of Boilerfood


3.75/5  rDev -13.4%

11-06-2012 02:40:15 | More by Boilerfood
Photo of Slay40


4.75/5  rDev +9.7%

11-02-2013 01:45:12 | More by Slay40
Founders Backwoods Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 5,279 ratings.