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Founders Backwoods Bastard - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Backwoods BastardFounders Backwoods Bastard

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,382 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,382
Reviews: 1,429
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 10.62%
Wants: 678
Gots: 1,563 | 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
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Ratings: 5,382 | Reviews: 1,429 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AmitC
4.28/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another Founders. This time in the backwoods. Bottle dated 15th October 2012.

Poured into a snifter, One finger thick tan colored head that soon dissipates into a ring. Excellent lacing. Hazy cloudy appearance with a lot of suspensions, probably of yeast. Color is dark brown comparatively transparent for a dark color. Ruby hue appears in the light. Almost no observable bubbles.

Smell : Some caramel that is prominent. Along with some burnt, smoky nose and a little alcohol. Oak barrel aging is only somewhat apparent.

Taste : Tastes like some kind of burnt up malt syrup. High on caramel, low on hops. some flavors of vanilla and alcohol. I personally do not like the taste. Sweet finish. Some wood flavor, that is very hidden.

Mouth feel : Medium bodied feel that is smooth due to moderate to low carbonation. Excellent warmth due to high ABV 10.2%. Not astringent at all due to alcohol, hops, or carbonation. So easy to drink.

This is a one strong ale. Way strong.

Style rate : For a strong scotch ale, it is good 4.25
Personally : 3.75, mainly due to alcohol and easy drinkability. Onthe lower side due to taste that puts me off. I won't buy it next time.

AmitC, Nov 18, 2012
Photo of mportnoy
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%

mportnoy, Nov 18, 2012
Photo of archi348
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

archi348, Nov 18, 2012
Photo of mjtiernan
4.43/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into an oversized snifter. Bottled 2012.

A: Half-finger khaki head...dissipated pretty quickly leaving a small cap and decent bubbles around the edge. Lots of alcohol legs and decent lacing.

S: Wow...awesome. Vanilla, coconut, caramel and a hint of cherry juice. Alcohol aroma is evident as you breath it in more.

T: Everything from the aroma comes through and I’m thankful for it. Tons of vanilla, coconut, dark fruits...mostly cherry. Strong alcohol.

M: This is a sipper...partially because it’s so enjoyable that you want to savor it, but also because the alcohol is not hidden. Body is pretty full, texture creamy, carb soft.

O: I’m a sucker for beers that get more flavor out of the barrels they use than the bourbon the barrels held. This is an excellent example...and an interesting experiment with a scotch ale. Grateful to now be able to get it in my market.

mjtiernan, Nov 18, 2012
Photo of mjohnson17
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

mjohnson17, Nov 18, 2012
Photo of meehandennis
4/5  rDev -7.6%

meehandennis, Nov 18, 2012
Photo of Mick-e-d
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%

Mick-e-d, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of BeerBuckeye
4.43/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poursa dark mahogany wood color, slightly reddish hue. Absolutely no head.

S- Smells of dark fruits, vanilla, and oaky Bourbon. Very nice smelling.

T- very robust, complex taste. Tastes of dark fruit, vanilla bean, and smooth Scotch. Very nice blend, bourbon is muted and provides for a nice, subtle, mellow backbone. Very good.

M- Incredibly smooth, even a bit creamy.

Overall- As someone who isnt even a huge fan of barrel aged beers, I found this one to be superb. Great complexity, smooth whiskey taste that isn't overpowering. Very very good

BeerBuckeye, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of DaleMcMutt
5/5  rDev +15.5%

DaleMcMutt, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of micromaniac129
4.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my yeti sniffer and rewarded with brilliant ruby amber beer. The head was about average which was fast receeding to a simple foamy collar. Gentle carbonation.

Aroma was all bourbon barrels. Perhaps some toffee malts and burnt sugars.
Taste is sweet with boozy oak. Bourbon is most apparent but not overwelming.
A very warm alchol presence lead me to believe the ABV is much higher.
Drinks smooth with a dry puckering finish.
A warming smooth sipper.

micromaniac129, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of RedneckBeerz
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

RedneckBeerz, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of BigJim5021
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%

BigJim5021, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of WillCarrera
4.43/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, I can't find a bottled-on date but it's the 2012 vintage, poured into tulip glass.

A- Pours a dark brown with a thin khaki head, leaves spotty lacing.

S- Sweet, rich aroma, lots of caramel, some butterscotch and vanilla as well as a nice dose of bourbon and oak. The aroma really leaps out of the glass and is just delicious.

T- Sweet malty flavors of caramel, butterscotch and vanilla. The bourbon and charred oak barrel are very noticeable as well, the wood lends a bit of dry astringency, although the malt flavors are pretty sweet and rich.

M- Medium to full-bodied, smooth carbonation, a bit sticky with a dry finish and a bit of boozy warmth.

O- This is a damn delicious, wonderful beer. It's very rich and the flavors are interesting enough to sip at all evening. Along with the Breakfast Stouts this is easily one of Founders' best beers.

WillCarrera, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of rundocrun
4.7/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep ruby-brown body. Quite clear. 1/2 finger of tan head forms, but fades relatively fast--common for most barrel-aged beers.

S - Heavy notes of vanilla, caramel, and boozy sweet cherries. Woody black pepper, charred oak, and clove aromas are more subtle.

T - Begins with a healthy dose of dark caramel, mild booze, vanilla and toasted oak. The middle is where the scotch ale caracter comes in--spicy fig and ripe berry notes intercalate into the bourbon flavor well. Finish is burnt sugar, oak, peat and vanilla. The flavor overall is a shape-shifter and incredibly complex. A pleasure to sip.

M - Thick body. Booze more prominent with warming, but not overwhelming. Finish is sweet and a bit sticky, but for a true desert of a beer, that's no problem.

rundocrun, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of Myst
4/5  rDev -7.6%

Myst, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of Bpierso1
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%

Bpierso1, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of Anonymous1
3/5  rDev -30.7%

Anonymous1, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of pschul4
4.28/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Mcbeerbrew hooked me up with this beauty

A- Pours a nice brown with a tiny bit of off white head that leaves just a little bit of lacing on my glass. Sits very dark in the glass, almost black

S- Hints of bourbon and caramel. Nice malts in there as well. Slightly subdued however

T- The flavor is less bourbony than the smell would lead you to believe but its still really tasty. Less bourbon but more caramel malts. Every sip is great

M- Chewy, but in a good way. Definitely a sipper

O- I liked it, didn't love it. Would definitely drink as much as I can get though

pschul4, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of erickehoe
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%

erickehoe, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of Massbmx
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

Massbmx, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of Paul3371
4/5  rDev -7.6%

Paul3371, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of VernonKell
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

VernonKell, Nov 15, 2012
Photo of kojevergas
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Lucked out and picked this one up locally - albeit for $7.00. 355ml brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a New Belgium stem-goblet in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are through the roof; heard nothing but great things about this one. 10.20% ABV confirmed. I dig the label.

Served after a period of rest to warm up after leaving the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a half finger khaki colour head of nice cream and thickness but underwhelming (~20 second) retention - though this is more than excusable for the style. Colour is a very dark ruby-amber; it's not black or brown. Very appealing sleek velvety colour; even if it is quite dark. Nontransparent and (surprisingly) non-opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. There's a certain luxurious quality to its dark hue.

Sm: Vanilla, alcohol (but a warm, inviting type of alcohol aroma), caramel, dark sugars, dark malts, heavy oak chips, fine bourbon, raisin, and more bourbon. Wow. Rich and decadent. A fantastic aroma; I'm really interested in this one. I can't wait to try it. Complex, subtle, and nuanced. Some of the most vibrant oak in an aroma I've ever experienced. Really appealing. No yeast comes through.

T: Vanilla and oak chips up front, with dark raisiny malts forming the near-perfectly sweet clean body. Fine bourbon undertones are evocative throughout, joining with the oak in the climax for a lovely delivery of more vanilla and fine dark fruit. The bourbon and oak aging here is top notch, with the tones complementing the flavours rather than competing with them. Some caramelized sugar throughout. Malty caramel is fantastic and understated; not overbearing like many beers in the style. Some hints of maple syrup in the early second act. Hop presence is minimal to nonexistent. I don't even get floral character off it. I keep wanting to detect chocolate but there's just a fleeting whisper of it and it's gone. Same with some sort of fruity note in there; almost the slightest hint of plum or perhaps even fig. About as subtly done as they come. That's one tasty beverage. Obscenely well balanced. Quite tasty. I can tell she'll drink better as she warms. The alcohol is present as a light touch of heat to warm the stomach; about as pleasant an alcohol presence as is possible. Wow. This redefines how I look at this style.

Mf: Perfect thickness. Slight undercarbonation. Good rolling smoothness and wetness. suits the flavours quite well. I could use a bit more dryness and coarseness on the finish to encourage the next sip. The biggest flaw with this beer is the mouthfeel; which is too smooth and wet overall (though this does bolster drinkability).

Dr: Sweet mother of fuck that's good stuff. Definitely lives up to the hype. Drinks like a fine bourbon but with improved drinkability. This changes the game for the style in my book. Replaces Old Chub as my idea of the ideal Wee Heavy. Drinkable as hell for the ABV - which is itself very well hidden. The vanilla is delightfully subtle and incredibly well executed. I'd definitely have this on draught, well worth aging as well. Another glowing success from Founders. This is one brewery that really lives up to the hype.

Serve a bit warm. She drinks best that way.

High B+

03.23.14: Truncated notes from a 2013 vintage bottle served chilled.

Just has one of the finest bourbon aromas out there. The oak, the vanilla, the toasty character...wonderful. Plenty of cream and sweet Wee Heavy malting too.

Doesn't taste quite as good as the 2012 bottle I initially reviewed. The bourbon is there, but it doesn't blend quite as well with the base beer as I remembered. The malting is actually a bit distracting.

Smooth and wet. Near perfect carbonation.

Overall, not the world class Wee Heavy I remember it as. Chalk it up to batch variation. That said, it's still real tasty. I'll be buying it up in future years.

High B

kojevergas, Nov 15, 2012
Photo of vbiliyar
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

vbiliyar, Nov 15, 2012
Founders Backwoods Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 5,382 ratings.