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Founders Backwoods Bastard - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Backwoods BastardFounders Backwoods Bastard

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5,266 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,266
Reviews: 1,424
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 10.62%
Wants: 651
Gots: 1,543 | 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: 5,266 | Reviews: 1,424 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brianlindman


4.63/5  rDev +6.9%

On tap at Founders...

A - great appearance pours dark with a nice head.

S - Sweet malty smell.

T - sweet bourbon aroma and taste.

M - Smooth in the mouth slight alcohol aftertaste, SWEET, VERY SWEET.

Overall loved the beer taste great even after CBS. Very smooth for 10% ABV.

I will look fo it in the bottle this year!!

10-02-2011 16:53:57 | More by brianlindman
Photo of brew3crew


4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

In line at founders for CBS. Gruelurks thanks for the taste! 2007 vintage

A-brown body maroon aoubd the edge. Possible oxidation

S-still has a nice Bourbon with a malt backbone

T-wow. Very suprised. Nice Bourbon sweetness. Little bit of oxidation but still very good. Would be 4.5

M-medium body andvsmooty

O-very very good beer

10-01-2011 09:29:30 | More by brew3crew
Photo of mattboyer182


4.93/5  rDev +13.9%

A - Pours a deep mahogany/brown. Thin to no head. Yeast up a storm in this bad boy.

S - smells of pure sweet malt, dark fruits and a strong alcohol scent.

T - tastes is very sweet. Lots of wood in this. Intense alcohol bringing up the rear.

M - heavy body and light carbonation.

O - such a great style. So old and perfect for a chilly night.

09-28-2011 19:58:38 | More by mattboyer182
Photo of eclipse54


4.3/5  rDev -0.7%

I've had this several times in the past, thanks to a couple generous traders (FluffyMcTingle and inlimbo77). A 12 ounce bottle poured into a DFH signature glass.

Pours a dark brown, oaken color that is very nearly opaque. A small, thin layer of tan head develops, bud dissipates quickly. Small patches of wet lacing are left as the beer diminishes. Smells of bourbon, caramel, some toffee, a touch of vanilla, oak, and some dark, sugary fruit (cherries, date). Tastes of caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak, bourbon, and the same dark fruits. Very well balanced and palatable. The alcohol is almost completely hidden, only noticeably by a warming exhale. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy, and it finishes a touch dry. Overall, a spectacular brew that I could easily sip on all evening. It pains me that I don't have regular access to this.

09-25-2011 23:10:20 | More by eclipse54
Photo of perrymarcus


4.38/5  rDev +1.2%

12oz bottle served in a snifter.

pours a deep coppery tone / borderline mahogany while yielding a thin, short lived head; no real lacing to speak of. really an average looking brew, and that might even be generous.

the nose, however, is fantastic. bourbon is the runaway headliner of this show, followed by notes of caramel, brown sugar, some dark fruit-like characters and and a noticeable though not overbearing presence of alcohol. really nice.

wow, huge bourbon presence translates to the flavor. much boozier than the aroma indicated; it's almost as if the bourbon was added directly to the beer. the caramel, brown sugar and dark fruits are all evident, along with a touch of vanilla. gets better as it warm, the one big drawback here is the booze. medium-full on the palate with adequate carbonation.

overall it's a definite winner. flawed, yes, but very tasty nonetheless. i enjoy a good bourbon bomb, so admittedly i may be a bit biased here.

edit: upping my score on taste after sampling the current (2011) batch. the bourbon seems more well blended for a smoother and tastier overall flavor. fantastic beer.

09-18-2011 03:09:56 | More by perrymarcus
Photo of jsanford


4.2/5  rDev -3%

12oz bottle poured into a Founders Tulip. 2010 Vintage.

A - Pours a beautiful dark mahogany with a slight ivory head that quickly fades to a slight ring and wispy haze.
S - A huge nose featuring big aromas of sweet caramel, cocoa, rum-raisins, and bread pudding, all wrapped up in intense notes of caramel, oak, and vanilla from the Bourbon barrel. Outstanding!
T - Tastes features more sweet caramel/toffee, candied nuts, dark fruits, and vanilla, caramel, and oak from the Bourbon. The Bourbon is nicely integrated into the beer, such a perfect melding with the style.
M - Mouthfeel is slightly sticky, but still smooth, with a medium-full body and moderate carbonation. Carbonation fresh out of the bottle is a bit high, but as this sits and warms it works out nicely.
O - Excellent offering from Founders, and a great take on an already awesome beer (Dirty Bastard)!

09-07-2011 03:05:31 | More by jsanford
Photo of afdempse


4.05/5  rDev -6.5%

12 oz. bottle

Dark ruby color, with a creamy head that leaves spotted lacing in the glass.

Aroma of bourbon, caramelized malt, brown sugar and vanilla

Flavor is boozy, with bourbon-soaked malt, earthy, slightly tannic and sour oak barrel notes. Alcohol warms the finish and mixes with a touch of vanilla.

Very smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Alcohol is well balanced & smooth for the strength.

Another excellent bourbon beer from Founders!

09-06-2011 03:10:24 | More by afdempse
Photo of BedetheVenerable


3.88/5  rDev -10.4%

Presentation: 12oz brown pop top, imaginative label, bottled 10-08-10. Poured into a New Belgium globe

Appearance: Pours a sienna hue, with tons of tiny sediment in suspension, topped with a nice sandy tan cap which shows pretty nice retention.

Smell: Here we get back on track. It's like liquid, slightly boozy, sticky toffee pudding, full of tons of dark, burnt caramel and toffee and dark, date-like fruitiness. As this approaches cellar and then room temperature, I'm also getting mild hints of bourbon-soaked cherries. At room temp, nice tobacco and vanilla extract notes emerge as well.

Taste: Definitely more booze in the flavor than in the aromas. This is fairly sweet (which I like), with a booziness that is half-way between warming/enjoyable and intrusive. The alcoholic esters come across in a dark fruity sort of way. It's sweet, with some toffee and dark caramel notes, but not much malt depth, which is really a bit disappointing.

Mouthfeel: Slick, pleasantly boozy, medium side of full-bodied.

Overall: This is a tasty beer, no doubt. With almost a year on it, it's a pleasantly (for the most part) boozy cold-weather-appropriate sipper that's stays relatively close to the British style of Wee Heavy. Yet, for about $12 a 4-pk, it doesn't have quite the depth or complexity I'd need for it to become a regular seasonal purchase.

09-05-2011 03:11:49 | More by BedetheVenerable
Photo of Dubber55

New York

3.93/5  rDev -9.2%

2010 vintage- served at a little above cellar temp.

Pours a deep, dark brown. Viscous stuff. 1 finger of mocha/tan colored head. Looks nice.

Solventy, fusel alcohol in the nose. You can definitely smell the bourbon and the oak along with caramel and savory spice.

Initial taste is a strong punch of bourbon followed by spices. Kind of like a christmas fruitcake- nutmeg, allspice, and clove. Reminiscent of a BSDA. There is also an earthy tobacco like flavor. In the finish I taste oak, brown sugar, and more bourbon. Pretty boozy and not overly sweet.

Mouthfeel is medium to heavy- viscous stuff- creamy and silky. Carbonation is medium. Kind of tingly. Maybe distracts from the flavor a little bit.

When I drank this beer fresh, you could definitly taste the base beer. Now, not so much. I am surprised the bourbon is still so strong considering I have been aging this for almost a year. It is a good beer its just that I was hoping it would be more complex. If you have a 2010, I would suggest aging it longer.

Bottled 9/23/2011

Smells like smoke, tea, a little caramel, light oak , and savory spice. Taste is the same with some earthy hops added. Not very boozy and I can still taste base beer. The 2010 vintage I aged for a year was boozier than this fresh one. Would probably give this a B/B+

09-05-2011 01:05:34 | More by Dubber55
Photo of wnh


4.43/5  rDev +2.3%

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a rich mahogany, deep and dark, somewhat turbid, topped by a small and fleeting cream-colored head.

Nose is packed with oak and vanilla, earthy cocoa, a bit 'green,' with a cherry-like fruitiness. Dense.

Quite a different beast on the palate. I'm hit with a wave of maple syrup and honey, sweet and earthy and clean. Finishes with a rich candied nut character, dried orange peel, a bit of char. Wow. Rich and sweet but subdued. Quite mellow.

Medium to full bodied, firm, and a bit drying.

08-26-2011 22:03:31 | More by wnh
Photo of MikeyRx


4.53/5  rDev +4.6%

The last of my 2010 Founder's collection.

A- Pours a rich, deep red-brown, like mahogany, very cloudy and zero head (likely due to the age and alcohol content).

S- Malt, oak, bourbon, dark fruits and caramel... this is one of my absolute favorite beer aromas!

T- Sweet flavors of raisins or dried plums with hints of vanilla are followed by strong but not overpowering oak and bourbon flavors. The characteristic wee heavy flavor is there and the beer finishes a little boozey.

M- Feels heavy in the mouth to start with minimal carbonation, but a sharp bitterness, due to the alcohol content, takes over leaving you with a medium mouthfeel.

Founder's take on the Wee Heavy is one of my favorites. It maintains the Scottish character but the added complexity of the oak bourbon barrel aging really sets this beer apart.

08-26-2011 04:59:12 | More by MikeyRx
Photo of Dan3279


4.22/5  rDev -2.5%

The aroma was great with bourbon, vanilla, caramel and oak notes. The taste was outstanding, bourbon dominated the flavor but it wasn't over powering. All of the other flavors are blended together so well in a smooth and balanced manner. Caramel, vanilla, brown sugar, oak and dried fruits are all present and work well together.

The carbonation was mild but the beer itself was medium bodied, but comes off a hair on the light side.

Overall another solid offering from Founders. In the future I would love to see this in a 750ml bottle.

08-26-2011 00:55:46 | More by Dan3279
Photo of Chriscrundwell12


4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Darkness snifter.

A- Pours a ½ finger head dissipates quickly, carbonation streaming off the bottom of the glass, dark muddy brown color, really cloudy, splotchy lacing, nice bubbly lacing around the glass.
S- Big bourbon aroma, dark fruits, vanilla, alcohol is present, malt, some spice.
T- Bourbon is definitely present, bitter sweet, vanilla, oak presence, caramel, brown sugar, some spice, sweet malt.
M- Big mouth feel, crisp finish, nice burn from the alcohol, well carbonated.
O- This is a big beer, really enjoyed the big bourbon flavors, not over powering but really balanced, really impressed.

07-28-2011 04:41:38 | More by Chriscrundwell12
Photo of Knapp85


4.22/5  rDev -2.5%

Thanks TATURBO for the bottle of this, much appreciated!
This bottle poured out as a light muddy brown color with a soft creamy looking head on top. The lacing is thin but sticks nicely. The smell of booze, maple, some fennel, malts and wood all flood out of this beer. The taste is sweet with some light vanilla flavors, sweet malts, a light amount of bourbon and some earth in there too. The mouthfeel has some soft bubbles and a smooth creamy feel in the mouth. Overall I am very glad I finally got to try this one. I had wanted to give it a shot for a while and I did my best to enjoy each sip of this. This beer is great but isn't my favorite from Founder's.

07-20-2011 00:05:23 | More by Knapp85
Photo of warbird07


4.53/5  rDev +4.6%

my very last 2010...poured into my over-sized snifter..pours a translucent mohagony body with almost no head,minimal lacing denotes the booze presence...and wow...are you greated in the nose with bourbon..but it is every pleasent aroma that bourbon has to offer,mixed with a nice malty backbone..honestly a truely exceptional nose..the taste is great..just what you would expect out of a good wee heavy, but with a nice bourbon presence...a bit boozy on the back end though..and the aint so bad...a nice mouthfeel to a wonderful beer...

07-19-2011 02:17:51 | More by warbird07
Photo of Marty30


4.43/5  rDev +2.3%

Thanks to imperialking for this. Poured into a Jackie O's snifter At 50 degrees.

A. Body is A dark muddy brown with a ruby tint.Almost no head as expected,It just gives off some large bubbles.Very little lacing.

S. Big caramel malts hit you in the face,nice bourbon notes shine through,not overpowering by any means.A bit of oak,and dark cherries.

T. Sweet tasting beer,not bad tho fits the style.Bourbon and caramel,a bit of vanilla and oak from the barrels.

M. Feel is awesome,heavy and creamy, coats the palate very well. Not much carbonation but I wouldn't expect there to be.

Overall this is another badass beer from Founders,easily my Favorite brewery. I definately recommend this beer,a must try!

07-17-2011 17:21:58 | More by Marty30
Photo of kawilliams81


4.33/5  rDev 0%

Served in a 16 oz snifter.

A- Dark brownish/orange and a little cloudy. Not much of a head but leaves large bubbles on top with some lacing on the glass.

S- Vanilla, bourbon, oak, dark fruits, spices. A awesome blend of aromas that you would expect from a barrel aged beer.

T- Starts off with some roasted malts and spice, followed by the bourbon, oak, vanilla, and dark fruits. Finishes with some bitterness, bourbon, and alcohol.

M- Full body but not chewy. The abv is definitely there throughout and finishes with a slight dryness that almost coats your mouth, if that makes any sense?

O- Great beer from Founders again! You get the initial flavors of dirty bastard and then the perfect blend of oak, vanilla, and bourbon finish off the beer perfectly. A must try!

07-17-2011 03:15:22 | More by kawilliams81
Photo of jmvecchio1


3.73/5  rDev -13.9%

Appearance: The beer is dark amber/copper in color with some nice lacing around the top. The caramel and roasted malts have left it with a nice color that signaled to me that a there will certainly a taste behind this beer.

Smell: I got a lot of oaky bourbon and scotch aromas off the beer. The beer has a very sweet alcohol smell to it as well. During tasting, the aroma is what really hung around after the sip.

Taste: The beer is lightly carbonated, which is good as it doesn’t detract from the strong flavors going on. The upfront taste I got was of the sweet malts (which even the 50 IBUs couldn’t fully balance out). The finish left a warming alcohol sensation with each sip. The tastes also didn’t obnoxiously linger long after a sip, but – like I mentioned earlier – the aroma did.

Drink: As it’s a 10.2% ABV, it’s a sipper, but it surprised me with how easily drinking it was. This would be a great beer to enjoy during the colder winter months given that warming alcohol taste.

07-16-2011 19:08:31 | More by jmvecchio1
Photo of KAP1356


4.43/5  rDev +2.3%

Reviewed from notes. Had with Mike Stevens at the Founder's event at Capone's during PBW. Poured into a snifter...

A - Pours a deep amberish burgandy color with a nice beige head, about .5 fingers thick, that recedes to a film on the top.

S - Bourbon, vanilla, brown sugar, caramel all right off the bat. Some oak is noticed as is some fruits as well.

T - Caramel, brown sugar, vanilla goodness right up front. Bourbon and oak follow on the palate and finishes with some boozey notes. Slightly biscuity notes as well rounding out the sweetness of the rest of what's going on.

M - Medium to heavey bodied beer with moderate carbionation. Creamy texture on the tongue.

O - More and more, this is becoming a favorite of mine. Really like how the barrel integrates into the base beer and comes out a winner. Thanks Mike!

07-12-2011 17:20:47 | More by KAP1356
Photo of colt45n


3/5  rDev -30.7%

A: Pours a copper red w/ very little head

S: Lots of sweet bourbon smell mixes in with caramel malt

T: similar to nose oak/bourbon flavors, Nice sweet caramel finish. Not very hot in taste. Smooth but complex and put together.

M: Very smooth with small carbonation. Surprisingly smooth without a syrupy feel.

Not to bad considering this is not really a style that Ive ever much enjoyed.

07-05-2011 23:43:31 | More by colt45n
Photo of Gosox8787

New Hampshire

4.22/5  rDev -2.5%

Presentation: 12 oz. bottle courtesy of Spleeb. Poured into my Portsmouth Brewery tulip.

Appearance: Dark to medium brown in color with some nice amber highlights throughout. Poured s one finger head that immediately recedes into nothing.

Aroma: Caramel, molasses, and a whole bunch of bourbon. It's pretty hot for the most part. Some vanilla and brown sugar are there as well. Really pleasant, but hot.

Taste: Caramel, vanilla, and brown sugar dominate here. Much smoother than the aroma. The bourbon is really pleasant and compliments the other flavors well. Not overly sweet, with a nice balanced finish.

Mouthfeel: Plenty of carbonation and full bodied. Warming, but very smooth.

Overall, a really nice bourbon barrel aged scotch ale. The booze is a bit heavy in the nose, but it blends well in the taste. A nice, complex and warming sipper. Definitely recommended.

06-27-2011 01:52:22 | More by Gosox8787
Photo of chromemittenman


5/5  rDev +15.5%

Was fortunate enough to get a bottle from a friend. This beer is absolutely incredible...very smooth taste, definitely can tell it was aged in Oak Barrels. If you aren't a fan of the oak aged beers, then this one might not be for you...but this beer is no joke...some bite of whiskey on the front end, but smooths right out. I think one is enough for drinking one of these...I wish I had several more!!

06-27-2011 01:10:27 | More by chromemittenman
Photo of Franz4


4.1/5  rDev -5.3%

12 oz bottle poured into a chalice, 2010 vintage

A- dirty hazy brown with sediment suspended evenly throughout glass. No head to speak of, just a thin ring of foam.

S- nice bourbon nose with strong vanilla and oak noticeable. It's like they're making the bourbon right in your glass. Brown sugar and molasses become more evident as it warms.

T-Nice bourbon flavor dominates the beer, slight warming in the back of the mouth. The mashed grain taste continues to be ever present.

M-Carbonation is light but noticeable, medium bodied, but for the punch this beer packs it seems just a little light.

O- This is a nice brew, not as stunning as I remembered it, but nevertheless it's a beer to take your time with and appreciate.

06-23-2011 23:06:13 | More by Franz4
Photo of Phelps


4.2/5  rDev -3%

Vintage 2010 bottle into a snifter. This is the barrel-aged version of Founders’ year round wee heavy, Dirty Bastard.

A murky swampwater emerges from the bottle, the color of tree bark in the darker parts fading into cloudy amber at the edges. A powerful pour begets few bubbles; a millimeter-thick film is all that rises from the depths before disappearing forever.

This smells like I’m sitting in front of a fireplace in an old log cabin in the middle of an oak forest. Beautiful aromas of smoky peat met with vanilla, caramel, buttery oak, raisins and nutmeg. I can’t stop sniffing it, and that’s a sign of a great nose. As scotch ales go, it’s pretty close to perfect.

Incredibly smooth blend of flavors. The barrels don’t overtake the scotch ale, but rather accent it, adding the char of toasted oak, vanilla and butter to the caramel, pecans and dark fruits already present.

The lack of carbonation that dinged the appearance actually works beautifully here. The bubbles tingle the tongue like low-wattage electricity while the buttery, full-bodied brew moves about, giving off the slightest bit of fizz. Alcohol is, impressively, nonexistent in the flavor and hardly here in the feel. I’m getting a serious warming in the throat and hints of fumes in the mouth, but that’s it.

Illegitimate or not, Backwoods Bastard is a glorious wee heavy, showcasing a smooth and surprisingly drinkable blend of beer and barrel. It’s great now, but the flavors may yet be able to develop more — good thing I have a bottle from 2009 nestled away.

06-23-2011 05:41:14 | More by Phelps
Photo of AndyAvalanche


4.63/5  rDev +6.9%

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada Tulip/Snifter style glass. Maple brown color but orange when held up to the light. It's a little cloudy and hazy, but not too bad. Light brown sugar color head, not much lacing to it and it goes away fairly quickly. Not bad looking overall, wouldn't mind a little more lacing.

Smell is really good. Very well malted, lots of sweetness going on. Bourbon has a strong presence and probably the most dominant feature, but it's not overwhelming. Vanilla, hard crystallized sugar/syrup (sort of like rock candy), and some oak. Slightly smokey, but not very strong and a hint of alcohol that tickles your nose.

Taste is pretty much perfect. Bourbon comes out first, vanilla stronger in the taste than smell and as if the oak was soaked in it. Sugar again and some caramel, but more of a caramel/brown sugar liquor. Some smokeyness again, but not that strong, overpowered by the other flavors. Call me crazy but I feel like I can taste a slight hint of maple as well. Not very bitter, but there is a feint hop presence, but malts dominate here. ABV is high, but I probably wouldn't guess it would be that high by the taste, sort of a sweet boozy.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, I feel it could be a little more carbonated, but the mouthfeel compliments the flavor profile pretty well. Ratio is in favor of the malts but a good ratio/balance, slight tingle on the tongue from the alcohol. Pretty darn drinkable, perfect after dinner drink or nightcap. Not typical to the style, but I love what Founders is doing here, knocked it out of the park.

06-22-2011 00:48:03 | More by AndyAvalanche
Founders Backwoods Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 5,266 ratings.