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Founders Dirty Bastard - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Dirty BastardFounders Dirty Bastard

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1,711 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 1,711
Hads: 6,632
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 4.73%
Wants: 265
Gots: 1,489 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

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
Reviews: 1,711 | Hads: 6,632
Photo of bignick
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle purchased at Bauer Wine and Spirits in Boston. Poured into a pint glass.

Mmm, yummy. I think Founders did a really nice job with this one. While the body is a bit thin for the style, it is very drinkable and enjoyable. It pours a very clear brown with minimal carbonation and a small head. It taste of roasty malt with caramel and toffee undertones. For such a malt monster, the coffee and chocolate flavors are minimal. On the whole, I would say that it is spot on for the style. (495 characters)

Photo of gmcfarre
3.78/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into Samuel Smith oversized pint glass. No freshness dating.

A - Cloudy ruby brown with a 1 finger light tan head that falls quickly but stays whispy. Minimal lacing effect.

S - Roasted malt begins as most prominent, but as it warms the earthy caramelized sugar scent dominates.

T - Nice roasted malt with a roasted spiciness kick as it finishes. Nicely sweet. Definitely has the "tea-like bitterness" listed on the style page.

M - Not very carbonated. Smooth and full bodied with a bitter finish.

D - No taste of alcohol, but I can feel it after a pint. (594 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a dark brown color ale with a small off-white foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of strong malt, caramel and a light touch of smoke. Taste is also dominated by the strong malt presence with sweet caramel with a subtle touch of peat. Body is quite full and carbonation is low. Very interesting take on the style. (332 characters)

Photo of waldowin
4.45/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark burgundy, with an off-white head, which fades very quickly to just a ring. Solid lacing.

Smells of malts, caramel, peat, and milk. Fairly sweet, very pleasant.

Taste is golden raisins, candy, caramel, and a very small hint of coriander in the finish. Very smooth, sweet, mildly spiced, and wonderfully tasty. Malts everywhere!

Mouthfeel is silky smooth, big, and sweet up front with a mildly astringent finish, just leaves you ready for more malts.

Frighteningly drinkable for me. The ABV would slow me down, but I'd make a good run at it. (565 characters)

Photo of Shovelbum
4.27/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a thin creamy tan head over a deep mahogany body. Aromas of rich caramel malt greet the nose while the pint is just sitting on the table. No detectable hops upon closer olfactory inspection, just quaff after quaff of sweet sweet malt and maybe a faint trace of peat. It’s no surprise that rich malt flavors dominate the flavor as well. Notes of dark fruit, biscuits and smoky peat join the predominately roasted caramel flavor. A decent helping of sweetness, but its not cloying due, in part, to the mild bitterness in the background. Hints of the rather generous ABV level. Rich and full bodied with low carbonation. Fairly smooth in the mouth although its verges on being slightly slick at times. Mildly drying finish.

A well-executed high shilling ale. There is just a kiss of smoky peat, which I find to be the perfect amount in a Scotch ale. I find too many American versions of this style tend to go overboard with the peated malt. This one does not. True to style, it lets the malts take center stage with the hops lending just enough support to make sure it isn’t cloying. (1,091 characters)

Photo of heyitsbyron
4.45/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a single from Woodman's in Madison into an imperial pint glass.

Poured a deep ruddy brown with a very minimal, but tan head. Looks very slick and laces well.

Smells like fruity (prunes, etc) and boozy. By smell alone, I'd guess this was an imperial stout.

I was really taken aback by how hoppy this was. It's a malt bomb all right, but it's well balanced with a hoppy bitter flavor at first; then the after taste is very toasty. Has that creepy bubblegum taste-- a taste that always implies booze-- whose origins I can't quite figure. The hops and the toastiness keep it from getting that sickly syrup taste that Scotch ales often do as they warm.

Nice and slick going back, but a bit caustic and bubbly compared to the ideal. Full bodied, tongue-coating, but not unpleasantly syrupy.

It's one of those beers than you can infer has a lot of booze though you can't really taste it. That, to me, just screams drinkable. Good beer, I'd buy it again, and love to have it around the house or at the bar. (1,020 characters)

Photo of Hibernator
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Founders Dirty Bastard
12 oz brown bottle
Served in a 20 oz tulip pint glass

Pours a reddish amber color. Attractive head on top that leaves spotted patterns of sticky lace. The head turns to a thin lace around the glass.

Interesting aroma of candy sugars, malt and an overall sweetness.

Sweet and juicy malt mouthfeel. Strong hints of liquid candy sugar, caramel and dark fruits with a thick malt backbone. Nice hop presence on the finish. Much hoppier than most Wee Heavy beers that I've had. Extremely drinkable at a surprising 8.3% ABV. (551 characters)

Photo of ZAP
3.63/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a great looking cherrywood...nose is dark fruits, slight peatiness...dark fruits on the taste too but the dominant flavor is cocoa...a little earthiness to this as well...has some vodka like booziness to it...body is medium to full....creamy...

A nice scotch but not one I would rush to find again....despite my score a slight disappointment to me as I expected this to be one of my favorite wee heavys. (412 characters)

Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brownish barleywine appearance. Aroma whaffing of alcohol, also barleywineish and some spice and roast. Taste well balanced though followed by tongue numbness. Hops at finish with roast. Very well malted, some sweet rather than bitter chocolate, and cinammon, and a touch of smoke. and an easy drink. (300 characters)

Photo of JiminKY
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorite style of stronger beers, and I have liked each of the few examples I've had of the style. This is one that I highly recommend.

A- This beer is a beautiful chestnut color, pours with a half-inch head that quickly dissipates, and has a small amount of sediment in the bottom of the bottle. Label does not have any type of freshness date or indication, and does not state the alcohol content, though it does refer to it being strong.

S- The aroma is sweet and pungent.

T- The taste is superbly sweet and malty at first, followed by a nice slightly bitter "zing" as it passes over the tongue. Seems to be spot on for--and certainly holds its own against--the best examples I've tasted of the style. Alcohol content is well-hidden.

M- Smooth, mildly slick mouthfeel that envelops the tongue and coats the lips with lingering flavor.

D- Superb drinkability. Incredibly well disguised alcohol content. I had no idea it was an 8% beer until I read it here--could be dangerous. Goes down incredibly smoothly and begs for another to replace it. (1,077 characters)

Photo of dbalsock
4.82/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

oh man, this was really good... thanks, joshd, for the bottle

appearance: pours dark brown with a brown head that quickly laces the side of the glass. an orange hue breaks through at the bottom of the glass, and as i drink the color goes more towards amber.

smell: the malts come through in full force in the smell providing an appetizing sweetness. there is also a hint of flowers in the smell that i appreciate.

taste: i find this to be very nicely balanced although it's very sweet. the malts take control of this brew while the hops provide subtle and welcome backup. as the beer warms i think i can pull out a buttery taste.

mouthfeel: great texture and the perfect consistency. it's not too syrupy nor too thinly bodied. i find this to suit my palate perfectly.

drinkability: yes... all day long... (809 characters)

Photo of murphysbleachers
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a tumbler pint:
Appearance: Red/mahogany color, tan head faded quickly, left some lacing on the glass.
Smell: Caramel and sweet malt.
Taste: Sweet caramel malt comes through the most. A hint of chocolate, and a hint of sweet (Maraschino?) cherries.
Mouthfeel: Coats the tongue a bit. The alcohol warms me up just a bit on the finish.
Drinkability: Very drinkable for 8.3%. Been featured as the "beer of the month" at my bar and I can put away more than a few without complaint. A good everyday colder weather beer. (536 characters)

Photo of swid
4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer #11 (of 13) from my beer purchase in Indiana.

Founders Dirty Bastard pours a dark brown color into my tulip glass; a dark ruby color can be found when holding this beer up to the light. Atop the near-completely opaque liquid sits a 1/4", light brown head that quicky dissipates. Low carbonation, no lacing. The smell is dominated by the caramelized malts; lesser amounts of chocolate, cherry-like fruit and alcohol aromas are also to be had. Hop presence is minimal.

The taste of this beer is, as expected, big and malty, with a nice caramelized sweetness. This beer manages to hide its alcohol content well, making it a bit more than an additional sweet flavor. Other flavors present include chocolate, a vaguely cherry/plum fruit, and a mild floral hop bitterness. The mouthfeel for this beer is spot-on; full without being thick, and very smooth. Finishes smoothly as well, with a lingering aftertaste of sweet malts and fruits, a hint of alcohol, and a mild bitterness.

Overall, an enjoyable Scotch ale; as usual, it's a shame I can't buy it around here. (1,072 characters)

Photo of brentk56
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear cola brown color with a bountiful head that hangs around for the full term, leaving plenty of lacing behind as a momento

Smell: Complex combination of bittersweet chocolate, tobacco, peat and dark fruit

Taste: Starts out with deep chocolate malt flavors, bursting with leather and smoky peat nuances; mid-palate, a restrained hop flavor kicks in to balance the malts; long, satisfying finish of complex malt flavors

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and viscous with moderate carbonation; some warming alcohol on the finish

Drinkability: A very good Wee Heavy, though the mouthfeel is a bit thick (615 characters)

Photo of doctorjoeyboey
3.63/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The appearance is brown like a dark, hazy, undercarbonated root beer. The smell is sweet and like a weak version of the Sam Adams Triple Bock, scaring me immediately! The taste is actually pretty good compared to what the aroma prepares you for. It has a tomoto taste on the front palatte and a chocolate taste on the back. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and the beer is quite drinkable. This is a decent beer and definitely the most drinkable beer with “bastard” in the name that I have come across... it is also quite drinkable for it's high alcohol content. At the same time, I probably won't buy this beer again. (612 characters)

Photo of allengarvin
4.38/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark but clear ruby red color with a small light-tan head. Rather fruity aroma, like black cherries, along with a sweet maltiness. Strong, sticky malt sweetness up front, with a component of caramelized fruit. Hops are moderate but with the strong malt remain mostly in the background. A touch of warming, peppery alcohol can be detected around the finish. Big bodied though with medium-low carbonation.

A dead-on American interpretation of the style. (454 characters)

Photo of bearrunner44
4.32/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Murky, chocolate-brown overall color with shades of burnt orange. Minimal tan head.

Smell- Sweet, candy-like malt aromas. In the back, estery alcohol merges with slight hop scents to create a somewhat fruity aroma. A pleasantly sweet overall smell.

Taste- Heavy mouthfeel, very viscous. The alcohol is recognizable up front, but the toffee-like malt provides most of the flavor. A slight, wheat-like dryness cuts off the sweetness in the finish.

Verdict- Auch, laddie! Okay, the label is pretty cheesy, with the caricature of a Scotsman on it and the ScotchTalk ("It ain't fer the wee lads...") on the neck, but I like this beer. It's a tasty, hefty brew. (676 characters)

Photo of soulgrowl
3.33/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark red wine to coffee color, glows sunny crimson along the bottom edge. Coffee-stained peachy head; volatile with poor retention.

Smell: Dark malts, vodka-like alcohol, and some deep, slightly obscured estery hops. Sweetness of brown sugar or molasses.

Taste: Lots of coffee, woody and floral hops, quite nicely bittered, actually. Toasty flavors. Not as buttery or peaty as I'd expect from a Scotch ale... a unique take on the style. Alcohol sweetness is very present, like dark rum.

Mouthfeel: Cloying at times. Not full-bodied enough to warrant the stickiness - it should be a little more crisp or else a little less light.

Drinkability: Not my favorite Scotch ale, but pretty drinkable. I'd rather have a Belhaven. (744 characters)

Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light brown/ dark mahogony with very little head that has no lacing. It tries but to no avail.

Very malty with some smoke. Rich malty aromas. Lots of caramel as well. Very rich. Not much in way of hops.

Rich flavors as well. Very toasty. Tons of caramel. Great taste.

Nice, full bodied beer with great complexity and flavor. Alcohol is well subdued as well. (367 characters)

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle. Dark reddish-brown, with sticky spit-like foam on top.

Smelled pretty good, easy to smell the malt. The taste was better than I expected, not as overpowering as Robert the Bruce or Orkney Skullsplitter. Definitely I could taste the alcohol though.

Probably my favorite scotch ale so far. But not even close to my favorite style of beer... (369 characters)

Photo of mynie
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty opaque redness with little bits floating in it and with a nice tan head.

Very rich, sweet and sour malt with a nice zing of alcohol yeast. Lots of fruit, spice, and raw, burning molasses.

A big bang of all them nose flavors only on my tounge. Creamy coffee, molasses, big zippy alcohol yeast. Is this some kind of Belgian scotch ale? It's a perfect blend of both. It's a rush of all sorts of flavors and it's all pleasant.

Another wonderful beer from the folks at Founders. (490 characters)

Photo of santoslhalper
4.69/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearence: Out of the bottle it's a bubbly, very dark reddish brown with a thin, quick dissipating off-white head.

Smell: At my first sniff, I'm blown away. Fruits, caramal, molasses, a little bit of a roasted/burnt aroma, and much more. Highly complex, subtle, yet still balanced. An amazing sniffer.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Instantly rich, full-bodied and complex. The malts are the obvious focus, and are vast in flavor, complex, and strong, but balanced out by a nice bit of hop bitterness. A tiny bit of a tart tinge right before it goes down the throat. Finishes clean, a little sweet, and smooth. Full-bodied.

Drinkability and Overall: Now this is what I call a killer wee heavy. This one is amazing, I wish we could this locally here. But, alas, we can't, but next time we make it up to Michigan we'll definitly have to get more. Highly recommended.

Glass: St. Bernardus oversized brandy snifter
Music: "Caukazoid Germ" by Sixtoo (948 characters)

Photo of Maestro
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a bubbly brown with a thin, sparse head that leaves a good bit of lacing. The nose has lots of biscuit and toast aromas along with some date and raisin notes. It tastes great! There is a nice balance of bread, chocolate and fruit with the first taste. The carbonation is quite crisp, but not overwhelming. The mouthfeel is very smooth and the alcohol is hardly noticeable. This beer is highly drinkable. I will definitely have another when the opportunity arises. Another great beer from Founders. (513 characters)

Photo of Lnedrive14
3.62/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Sunset:

I don't know what happened today - I found all my beers to be way too sweet at Sunset. This was no exception. I admit this beer popped by Wee Heavy cherry, and it popped it with some cherries of its own. Definitely some of those pitted wonders in this one. Also some caramel sweetness.

I think my palate was overwhelmed by the EKU i had just had, but this was definitely more subtle. The alcohol, I felt, was a bit too apparent, especially as it is only 8.3%.

A strong sense of black bittersweet licorice and uncultured chocolate. Low to mid carbonation. No head, no lacing.

Anyway, I digress. It's an ok beer, nothing to write home about. I, however, look forward to many more Wee Heavies in my future. (735 characters)

Photo of maddamish
4.69/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My thanks to my co-worker Rob M for scoring this beauty for me.

Appearance: Small head that laces nicely. Clear copper in color.

Smell: "Wow" was the first thing that came out of my mouth. Notes of caramel, Cherry, Sugar and Malt. The aroma coming off of this beer is complex and pleasant. One of the better smelling beers I have had.

Taste: caramel, cherry and malt

Drinkability/Notes: II was very impressed with this brew. I wasn't expecting much and got the world. Should have known better considering it is a Founders beer. (532 characters)

Founders Dirty Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,711 ratings.