Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Founders Dirty Bastard - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Dirty BastardFounders Dirty Bastard

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,778 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,778
Hads: 6,962
Avg: 4.03
pDev: 21.09%
Wants: 290
Gots: 1,729 | FT: 22
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy | 8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mitchster on 01-03-2003

Brewed with 7 varieties of malt (varies over the years).
50 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 1,778 | Hads: 6,962
Reviews by vmdominguez:
Photo of vmdominguez
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

More User Reviews:
Photo of geodonnokepyo
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Smells like chocolate and rum
Tastes like toffee, malty, caramel, with a hint of chocolate.
Smooth yet chalky with a very mild booziness.
This is a great beer :)

 161 characters

Photo of Voonder
3.83/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours brown with ruby notes, small light brown head, great retention. Smell - very malty, some toffee, burnt caramel, hint of dark fruits. Taste - rasiny and malty upfront, then chocolate and caramel followed by hoppy bitter finish. Mouthfeel - alcohol is well present, though it's smooth, slightly off balance. Complex, strong this beer has some character. Very solid brew from Founders!

 388 characters

Photo of jmasher85
4.61/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

In fitting companionship to the drug-addled Ol' Dirty Bastard for whom this beer might well be named, Founders' Dirty Bastard would easily make a beer addict out of me if I weren't damn near close to one already.

A sweet, lightly wooded, and piney smell at first with remarkably flavorful yet constrained use of hops, Dirty also works in a hint of molasses and caramel from the large variety of malts thrown into the mix and a waft of a good smokey whiskey with barely a hint of vanilla. There's a surprising amount of diversity in the nose and the more I smell it, the more I discover. Is that citrus or strawberry that gives this beer its lightly fruity nose? Whatever it is, it's so mesmerizing, I could smell it all day - but I won't because that's only part of the fun.

The first taste is malt heaven, with far less emphasis of the hoppy flavor coming through overtly, but rather as a balance that tempers what might otherwise be too syrupy and rich. But this bastard of a beer is just right. Even the 50 IBUs it claims seem a bit of a stretch. I can only really get a hint of bitterness as the thin but frothy head folds over my tongue like a wool blanket, and it's mostly manifested in the taste of resin, wood, and musk.

It's strong, rich, and a bit on the pricier side, so this isn't a beer I'd drink all day, but one I could enjoy drinking almost any day.

 1,374 characters

Photo of JTuomi
4.16/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

33 cl bottle (bb 05/04/2015) into a tulip glass. Pours an amber brown body, small tan head, ok lacing and retention.

Smell has roasted malt, raisin, brown sugar, chocolate. The taste begins with sweet malt and builds up a roasted taste with chocolate, coffee and dark fruit, ending with a dry grassy hop and coffee-like bitterness. The aftertaste lingers long in the mouth with chocolate and coffee.

Medium body, medium-low carbonation, creamy mouthfeel. Overall a complex and flavorful sipping beer with pleasant smooth roasted taste to it.

 544 characters

Photo of garrettdeanjohnson
4.31/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I like founders. It's delicious. Done.

38 characters

Photo of Icedog
5/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The overall feel of a heavy brew going down like this bastard is refreshing; knowing that your body will be healthy after the nutrient content is absorbed makes it gratifyingly desirable.
The dirt flavor of the peat is overcome with the sweet malts and balanced with the reassuring hopfullness; leaving me with the quest for another pint to re-assure myself. Yes it's very good and deserves far better than a score of 90...

 424 characters

Photo of Cannibalgasm
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

A: Pours a deep blood red molasses color with one finger of creamy light tan head.

S: Molasses, caramel, sweet malts, coffee, vanilla, light citrus, dark fruits, barely, oak, subtle smokiness, bourbon???, a unique earthiness. Wow there is a lot of good things going on in this beer.

T: Sweet malts, caramel, molasses, barley, hints of coffee and vanilla bean, raisin, slight citrus, clove, oak, and a earthy hop spiciness.

M: Medium bodied with a good level of carbonation. Creamy and smooth with a nice slight alcohol burn on the finish.

O: An incredible Scotch Ale. Founders did a great job on this one. An absolute must try. This is a frequent flier in my year-round rotation.

 712 characters

Photo of OhioLimoncello
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Does Founders brew anything that doesn't taste exceptional? I don't think so. Nothing like an endorsement from an Ohioan for a Michigan product. Just call 'em like I taste 'em. Keep it up, Founders! You guys are tops!

 222 characters

Photo of CTbrew32
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

appearance- Dark brown in color with no visibility throughout. Pours a two inch tan colored head.

aroma- Rich sweet malt aromas consisting of toffee and dark fruits and a burnt malt presence underlying the sweetness.

taste- Again the malt is very sweet with toffee and dark fruits noticeable at first, and then a peated malt comes in to balance the sweetness.

feel- Thick, chewy, full bodied, medium carbonation, and relatively clean in the finish for such a malty beer.

overall- This is a really great scotch style ale. Tons of malty sweetness with toffee and dark fruits, but it never comes close to being cloying especially with the peated malts adding a light burnt aspect to the beer. Overall, this beer really respects the guidelines of the style and it rivals the quality of a Bellhaven scotch beer. Definitely worth purchasing again.

 851 characters

Photo of dmgeng
4.49/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this beer many times and I am just now getting around to reviewing it. This is one of the best, readily available Scottish beers on the market.

A - Dark amber, almost brown color. Very clear with light khaki head with some staying power. Light lacing.

S - Rich malt aroma with caramel and toffee tones. There are also some ale esters and a graininess that lets you know there is a lot of different malts that go into this one.

T - Lots of malty goodness that hits the palate. There is a rich caramel, soft toffee, and a bready grain character that is throughout this one. There is some soft herbal-hop bitterness on the finish to help balance the sweetness but overall not too sweet. There is no alcohol character and with the soft finish this beer is very tasty.

M - Moderate to high mouth-feel. Light to moderate carbonation. There is less body than some other wee heavies which makes it more drinkable but with lots of flavor and no alcohol burn this beer is almost perfect.

Overall, this is the quintessential wee heavy to me. Some others of the style may have more flavor, more alcohol, or more body but the balance, taste, and drinkability make this a champion. This is definitely still a malt bomb but with layers of flavor I would suggest this beer to go with your beef-stew or haggis everytime.

Glass- Shaker Pint

 1,338 characters

Photo of kaseydad
4.31/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wife bout me a six pack and said the name fit......hmmmm.

Beautiful ruby/burgundy/brown colored ale with a nice sized beige head and light lacing.

Aroma is light scotch, BIG red cherry, caramel, boozed soak dark fruits and sour apple. Nice whiffs of this with each sip.

Taste is malty with a big dose of scotch, butterscotch and sweet malt. Just a great blend happening here.

A touch of spicy hops on each sip....well carbonated.

Overall this is a fantastic beer to try for this style. The alcohol is present, but the abundance of flavors overwhelm the senses and create an amazing beer-drinking experience. Appreciate it for the style it is and you will not be disappointed.

P.S. Love that word called "distribution". Overjoyed to see Founders finally make it out to Cali.

 787 characters

Photo of gmossii
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

If you have not had a Scottish Ale, then you have not been living. Adding rye to the mix adds a new flavor dynamic. It is also a nice bridge for you hops heads out there who think life begins and ends with IPA's. This is my favorite entry in this category to date. It has a nice mix between bitter and mellow sweet. It is also surprisingly smooth for something that is 8.5 APV, plus it is reasonably priced. Well worth the $10 entry price and even better on tap.

 462 characters

Photo of oberon
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep reddish brown with a pretty thin off-white head,big bold aromas of butter and brown sugar with some whiskey notes in there as well the alcohol is very prevelant.Flavors of dark fruit and alcohol are big here with some caramel just adding to the sweetness but this is fine for the style a big malt bomb for sure here.A warmer a sipping beer alcohol makes itself known for sure I have to stop now or I wont see the ending of Revenge of the Sith.

 456 characters

Photo of RoyalT
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – The beer itself is nice, a dark brown in color, but the head is absolutely magnificent. It’s moderate in size with the most luscious copper tone that I’ve ever seen in a head.

Smell – The scotch aroma is light and not boozy in the least. Too many of these efforts have that vanilla-like boozy smell but this is a pure Scottish malt character. There’s some light sugary cane as well. It nicely complements the malt.

Taste – The mating of beer and scotch flavors is right on for my tastes. The scotch flavor lingers at the finish making this a long, wonderful drag. It’s a powerful flavor yet somehow light in the mouth.

Mouthfeel – This is maybe medium-bodied with some surprising bitterness. The carbs are in the background but just enough to make this a fun drinker.

Drinkability – The bitterness might scare away a novice drinker but any fans of the style, and especially any lovers of fine scotch, will thoroughly enjoy this effort from Founders.

 985 characters

Photo of aszatk01
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of cam477
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of DanGeo
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Turbo
2.75/5  rDev -31.8%

Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep ruby red with mild clarity and a decent amount of light shining through. Creamy, tan colored head on a somewhat aggressive pour; beer appears pretty thick and syrupy. Has a pretty basic, sweet and malty aroma, slightly boozy and full of dark fruity. Taste hits first with a bit of that alcoholic warmth, right alongside a handful of fruity, dark esters. Bourbon-soaked raisins are the first thing that come to mind. Some caramel sweetness leads into almost a slight tartness that takes on a white grape type of flavor. Heavy yeast was noticeable in the aftertaste as the beer fades, leaving your mouth tasting like bread soaked with booze - not bad. Body is medium - slightly thinner than the pour and appearance would have you think, mild creaminess and overall low carbonation.

This is a very nice wee heavy that I've been fortunate enough to have available year-round in most stores. Definitely a slow-drinker with a strong 8.5% ABV profile, but very inviting and flavorful all the way down.

 1,008 characters

Photo of Allenicomp
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of ricke
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark amber with a small off-white head that settles fast. Minimal lacings.

S: The smell is malty with notes of caramel, toffee and vanilla. Quite a lot of fruity notes reminiscent of fruit candy.

T: The taste is very balanced. It's not very complex, but it's rich and round in character. Malts dominate with notes of caramel and dark bread. Lots of fruit aromas. It's fairly sweet, but nowhere near cloying. Notes of leafy hops and vanilla. The finish is somewhat bitter with notes of leafy hops, malts and subtle alcohol.

M: Medium body, smooth mouthfeel. Very easy to drink.

D: A balanced and tasty beer. Despite the sweet and malty character, it's very easy to drink. I like the subtle complementary hop notes and how they add a little something to the overall character.

 782 characters

Photo of ExtraStout
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A deep ruby brown with small tan head leaves lace, Dirty Bastard improves tremendously after it breathes and warms. Worth the wait and the drinkability is vastly improved.

Dark caramel brown sugar roasted barley and alcohol aromas. More complex aromatics rise with the temperature. Maple and roasted grain with some earthy peat flavor mellowed by dark sweet (never cloying) caramel.

Mouthfeel was creamy with full body and modest carbonation withdrew had a slick feel. Whiskey soaked plums and butterscotch and lingering caramel malt flavors in finish. Little going on with hops.

Not really my style but it was quite enjoyable.

 633 characters

Photo of t2grogan
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of brownbeer
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Russet in color with a creamy tan head.

Powerful nose of rum soaked raisin, candied red delicious apples. Malt driven with subtle red fruit.

Full bodied with toasty malts, raisin, and a dry hoppy finish. The alcohol shows enough to let you know it's there.

Really unique, though I wouldn't want more than one in a sitting. A nice cold weather sipper that I should have poured into a snifter rather than a pint glass.

 419 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Founders Dirty Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,778 ratings.