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Founders Dirty Bastard | Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Dirty BastardFounders Dirty Bastard

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed with 7 varieties of malt (varies over the years).
50 IBU

Added by Mitchster on 01-03-2003

User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,815 | Ratings: 7,127
Photo of mdm46410
3.38/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. This Scotch Ale poured a hazy, dark reddish brown color with visible carbonation when held up to light. Virtually no head or lace to speak of. The aroma of this beer was made up of sweet caramel malts, light yeast notes, and a bit of wood. The flavor is dominated by smokey malt richness. Some sweet caramel notes followed by a big roasted, smokey malt flavor. A touch of hop bitterness is present at the end. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied with light carbonation, leaving a lasting smokey taste on your tounge. Towards the bottom of the glass, it reminds me of drinking a Scotch and water. The flavor seems to become a bit muted by the smoke. I enjoyed the aroma and flavors that this beer presented, but the smokey finish seemed to detract from the overall experience. Made my mouth feel like I had sat next to a campfire for a few hours, directly in the line of the smoke eminating from the flame. A decent beer, but maybe just not my cup of tea. It was definately a Dirty Bastard!!!

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Photo of sublimesipping
4.85/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

had this on tap at the south philly tap room. Am I wrong to say malted milk in a glasss? So so so malty. Beautiful silky clear mahagony color. Great glass lacing and nice malt aroma. beer has as very long smooth finish. Malts malts and more malts. Absolutely the most complex scotch ale that I have ever had. A cutting edge version of the style. the taste deepens, tantilates and lingers. very, very smooth. My first and I hope not my last from a brewery I have heard lots about. hope to have more of this and others too! YUMMY!

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Photo of pavandal
3.47/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

beer poured a hazy amber color with a meringue like head on top, which dissapated to a thin layer.

smell was sweet, very malty. It had a slightly floral hop smell, with a slight citrus burn to it. I also detected caramel and chocolate scents. This beer smelled wonderful...

..but it fell short on taste. Don't get me wrong, it was "bad", it just doesn't live up to the awesomeness that the smell brings. It had a sweet start, with a flowery hop bitterness as well as a coffee like backbone. Not much here.

This had a thick mouthfeel, would be good in the winter for that "Stick to your ribs" feeling.

Higher ABV, so just have one.

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

Thanks to midwest malt man mnwags for this bottle.

A modest pour produces a huge head atop a fudgy brown with ruby highlights and a tan head that just about glows in its tan-ness.

Aroma offers big hops, which are belittled by even bigger malts, plus generous alcohol, with waves of toffee, fudge, and black cherry.

Flavors give everything the aroma does, plus dark raisin and musty peat. And more dark fruit. And more chocolate. Oh yeah. There's just enough alcohol creeping in to enhance the flavor, and not enough to detract.

Mouthfeel is creamy smooth, on the heavier side, but not too thick, and no unwanted stickiness.

Maybe a bit too alcoholic and demanding to be an everyday beer, but still, this is a killer Scotch Ale. Founders does it again.

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Photo of gunnerman
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, twist cap, pours an tan black in color with a creamy head that hangs around and leaves some thick lace on the glass. Smell is smell is very malty and smoky filled. This beer was a bit strong for me to handle, the intense malt flavors just didn't agree with me, I don't know if maybe it was a bad bottle or not, over all it wasn't bad but I was expecting a bit more. It was also hard for me to drink, and didn't go down to smooth at all.

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

poured into a flaired tulip glass from a stubby brown bottle with a twist-off cap. Thank to Sudsdog for the send.

Mirky,nectar-like,opaque,Mahogany color. 1" light tan head dissapating a bit quick to a collar of foam. Massive amounts of very tiny bubbles streaming to the surface,leaving lots of spot lace.

Very good strong malty aromas, Earthy.smoked peat,roasty,butterscotch carmell,complex amd inviting aroma.

Complex malty tastes,lots of sweet syrupy maltiness,earthy,roasty,a smoke taste,some peat flavors.
Very good balance with some spicy/slight citrus hop notes with somewhat of an unsweeten tea feel.

Thick bodied,cloying,mouthwatering nice mouthfeel. Good drinkabilty for the body and alcohol. Goes down easy not much alcohol presence for 8.3%. Should be getting this beer in the area soon will give this one another try. Very good beer,enjoyable,bit of a sipper,still could drink a few of these. Would definately recommend this beer.

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Photo of Foxman
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It pours a rich mahogany brown with a slight haze, like medium coffee. Two fingers of light tan head sustain for a little while, dropping away gradually. Sticky squiggles of lacing stitch the inside of the glass.

The aroma is malty sweet, with caramel and toffee joining a dark berry fruitiness. Roasted nuts and cocoa play off a minimal mist of spice, and the alcohol presents as solid but incorporated.

Upon sipping, the malt swirls on multiple levels, with caramel and molasses providing sweetness, and earthiness coming through with toffee, dark tree fruit, chocolate, and an almost seaside peatiness. The hops are cursory here as well, dishing up just a smidgeon of spice. In fact, the alcohol carries the real spicy glow here. Crusty sweet malt is residual near the end, and the finish is slightly drier but lingering like a sweet apple. The malt is complex and rather busy, but it ends up blending satisfyingly.

Medium bodied, it's slick and creamy, and the ebb and flow is smooth and sinewy.

This beer is one more reason I'm coming around to this style as a genuine joy to behold. When done well, it's richly sweet and savory, and this one fills that bill quite nicely. Yes, the ABV bears watching, at least out of the corner of your eye, but it's the flavor that makes you look away and enjoy another in spite of the spreading warmth. There's nothing here not to like, and plenty to like just fine.

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Photo of logansboat15
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Founders' delicious Scotch-style ale is among the best American versions out at the present time. Pours a deep brownish-red with a brown-tinged heady foam with light lacing. Smells of sweet caramel and malt and tastes as sweet as it smells. Very tasty, complex maltiness with a strong alcohol finish. Full, satisfying mouthfeel makes this brew highly drinkable. Pairs well with a strong cheese, greasy italian dishes and blueberry kringle.

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Photo of soupyman10
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this one at Monk's in the bottle. Appearance is amber-brown, a nice head, dissolves pretty slowly. Nose is solid; caramel malty sweetness, a little fruit. Taste is great; same type of maltiness, with caramel, chocolate, honey, some spiciness as well. A really tasty beer. Feel is solid, good carbonation and medium to full body. Drinkability is good, just a little bit high on the alcohol knocks it down a bit. A good beer I will look for again.

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Photo of greenbeaner
4.48/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thank you mmcave for the recommendation, this is one helluva a tasty beer. Alright, poured vigorously into my new FFF's nonic, creates a robust 3 finger head with decent retention and a nice ribbony lacing. Deep red copper, with a nice cascading effect on the pour.

Fairly robust on the nose, with a roasted malts up front and a thick caramel sweetness in the finish. A hint of hops.

Oh glorious malt. This and mouthfeel are where this beer really shine. Heavy roasted malt, raisen, caramel and caramelized sugar. A bit of hoppy bitterness for support and a smooth sweet finish.

Mouthfeel is thick creamy, finishes dry...but it's not syrupy at all, more cream than syrup. Nice and full bodied.

This is a wonderful beer, I gave drinkability a 5 because I could seriously drink this all the time, as a standard go to beer. Reasonably priced and it tasted amazing. What more can I say, I'll definitely be drinking it again.

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Photo of pmcadamis
4.7/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Dirty brown with a small tan head and some nice tan lace on the side of the pint glass. I had this out at Buffalo Wildwings after work, and I must say that a standard pint glass is really my least favorite thing to dring beer out of...it just doesn't do a good brew justice.

S - Rich toasty malt. Dirty and earthy notes along with a bunch of toffee and caramel.

T - Big caramel and toffee malts first, then more delicate flavors of burning leaves, brown sugar, toast, and peaty scotch. The alcohol is detectable, but it only adds to the complexity of this tasty brew. Hops are definitely second fiddle, but they are wonderful in their supporting role...just enough leafy bite to balance the loads of malt. The leafy hops add to the autumnal flavor of this beer.

M - Full bodied with some nice fine carbonation. Creamy, but tingly and playful too. Alcohol level is slightly warming, but if I didn't know the alcohol content of this beer, I might guess that it was around six percent. The alc. is present but never brash or intrusive.

D - Excellent. I could drink this all night, but you have to sip slowly and enjoy....never gulp down something so outstanding. This is one of my all time favorite beers! I must say that I slightly prefer the bottled version, but that may be just because I can serve it the way I want ....at cellar temp in a nice big chalice.

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Photo of bruachan
3.78/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this smells nice, though i can smell hops more than i would expect. it could stand to be a little richer

the head is great and the color is excellent as well. it's a nice mahogany. no...cherry wood. no...reddish brown. yeah...reddish brown

wee heavy? if i were blind i would have picked porter. big hop character. they advertise as much on the website so i'm cool with it; i guess nice beer doesn't have to be competition legal. the malt profile is rich, though not creamy enough. the roasting is beyond what one might expect

tha moral: good beer. not really a scotch

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy bronze-mahogany with amber highlights. The creamy tan one-finger head shows good retention and spotty lacing. Dark Crystal malt and slight plum aromatics are the strongest, with a mild herbal hop note and a earthy/yeasty scent in the background. Sweet caramel taste upfront, followed by a deep roasted flavor something like chicory. Aftertaste is long and drawn out, but not in any bothersome way. A lingering caramel sweetness gradually fades to a stiff roasty bite and sharp earthy yeast tones; finally met by a herbal hop flavor and balanced bitterness. Full bodied and lightly carbonated, it has a somewhat viscous mouthfeel that furthers the perception of fullness and allows a hearty residual sweetness without becoming cloying. It finishes very malty with dark fruit notes coming out more as it warms, eventually dryng out with the help of the ample hop prescence. This is strong and complex like a good Scotch ale should be, but it is also balanced well enough to retain an excellent drinkability. Cheers to Founders for giving the beer community a good representation of a style that is difficult to master.

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

12oz. bottle poured a black cherry with a small tan head that leaves a few specks of lace around the glass.

Smell - like sweet fruit and candy.
Taste - very malty, mild bitterness with a bit of yeast and alcohol in the finish.
Feel - medium bodied with some alcohol dryness.
Drinkability - pretty easy to drink by itself or with a meal but not one I would drink more than a couple of.

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear dark brown color with ruby hues and light head nor visible signs of carbonation.

The smell is sweet and deep aggressive dark fruit and molasseses.

The mouth feel is medium bodied, smooth and creamy, with a kiss hops. Adequately carbonated.

The flavor follows the nose and is complemented by the mouth feel.

Quite drinkable; "Slàinte mhòr agad!" "Great health to you!" ("Cheers!")

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Photo of Crosling
3.88/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Extremely dark ruby color. Fairly nice malt nose. Really complex hints of peat and smoke on the palate, with additional notes of caramel, toffee and fruit as well. Very nice body. Nice flavor. A very nice beer. I would love to buy this beer in a 6’er.

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Photo of sethmeister
4.23/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz into pint glass at cellar temp (approx 55 degrees)

Pours dark mahogany brown with ruby edges; almost opaque in the glass. Short-lived creamy tan head leaves a touch of lace. I notice a lovely cranberry color as the glass empties.

Scent is scotch, peat smoke, molasses, and dark fruits.

I taste sweet molasses, peat smoke, scotch, figs and possibly cherries. There is a hint of chocolate near the end. Caramel. A nice bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is rich, soft and chewey with just a slight hint of warming. Though I notice others have found this beer very carbonated my bottle was only lightly carbonated.

Drinkability is good and the abv is hidden quite well.

A delicious beer - one of my favorite Wee Heavies.

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.03/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle thanks to rsyberg01

Pours a murky orange-chestnut with an explosive orange head that escapes the tulip glass. Fades to a 1 finger head and maintains. Thick lacing on the glass.

Aroma is quite yeasty with a sweet caramel maltiness and a layer of herbal hops. The booze sneaks in as it warms.

Taste is both yeasty and hoppy upfront leading into a mild sweet caramel malt taste. The malt is quickly swept away by a rather large bitterness that rides through the finish - and lingers. Also becomes somewhat boozy at the finish. Very muddled.

Medium-full body, over carbonated.

Another over carbonated, yeasty Founders brew. I am seeing a trend here that I am finding to be rather disappoiting. I don't think that I keep getting "off" bottles, so I am left to assume that they have some bottling issues.

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Photo of TheodorHerzl
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Very dark with a nice rust color when held up the light

S: heavy earthiness with a very smokey content

T: Great backflavor with carmel flavor and you can taste the smokiness.

M: medium to a creamy finish, it was very nice.

D: Love this stuff. This was my first taste since I just bought singles, but want to go out and buy a sixer.

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Photo of zdk9
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I think I'm too wussy for this beer. The taste and smell were complex and delicious, but the alcohol was not well hidden.
Poured out a thick molasses color with a tiny reddish head. Taste is of carmel, smoke, roasted malts (hints of coffee), and a touch of dark fruit. Fairly bitter and alcohol unmasked which limits the drinkability.

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Photo of Luchman
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: A dark, cloudy, amber/brown color with a nice creamy off white/tan head that sits on top for a minute, then dissipates to a thin layer on top and clumps of lace on the sides.

S: Smells awesome. Some sweet caramel malts, some dark fruits, nice chocolate, some dark bread notes, and a nice touch of some alcohol. Smells lovely.

T: Yum. It matches the smell, to a degree. This is one of those beers that it's flavors perfectly mix together. Caramel and toasted malts come out the most with the dark bread that I believe comes out more than the smell. Those dark fruits, plums and cherries, come out with a slight hint of bourbon or scotch. The chocolate, I'm afraid, doesn't turn out as much as the nose entails, but thats not all bad. Ends kind of earthy/smoky with just a slight slight hint of hops that leave a slight dry bitterness on the tongue.

M: Medium/full body with a creamy texture. Great.

D: This stuff is killer. At about 8%, it can creep up on ya, but I could easily drink a couple of these and hit the bed. The more I drink from Founders, the more I love Founders. And let me tell ya… I would choose this over their breakfast stout any day.

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Photo of udubdawg
3.87/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle

Pours a hazy ruby brown color, with a decent light tan head. It fades rather quickly, but an uneven cap remains, and there is spotty lacing throughout the glass.

Nose is full of earthiness, and a sweet fruitiness that approaches vinous. A nice bit of smokiness. All mixed together in complex fashion with quite an alcohol punch.

Alcohol is also noted right away in the taste. Otherwise it is toffee sweetness up front. Tastes less fruity than it smelled, but there is some plum and especially raisin here, and maybe some lighter fruit that I'm not sure of. Medium bodied, and carbonation on the light side - it works well. In case you weren't awake, the big finish will whack you a bit with hoppy bitterness and throat-warming alcohol. Nice.

Very good beer. Far from sessionable, (for me at least) but I'd be happy to have another single bottle another time.

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Photo of liquidnoise
4.82/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured very dark with a dark head.

Smelled like barley, alcohol, and a little coffee maybe.

Tasted strong and bitter, with a little warmth from the chocolate/coffee flavor. The best from Founder's often overrated selection I have had thus far, (although it is a little pricier than their already expensive selection.) Beware the high alcohol content.

I often think Founder's brews are a tad bit overrated. This is the exception. Definately worth a try.

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Photo of muffguy4beer
3.62/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Light reddish brown in color with a light beige head. I noticed a lot of floaters making this dirty bastard truly one dirty bastard.

Smell: The first smell I get is very nutty and bready then a hint of fruityness. A pretty nice smell that has some definite character.

Taste: Starts out with that malty bread taste, somewhat sweet almost caramel in taste. Then I get a berry flavor that is a little smokey. The alcohol is nice and has somewhat of a warming effect.

Mouthfeel: Medium in body. Low carbonation.

Drinkability: The floaters, the fruityness and all that make this beer a little on the non-drinkable side for me. I did enjoy it but one or two is where I would draw the line with this offering. I remember liking it a whole lot more at the extreme beerfest maybe my tastes were out of whack or this bottle was not a good representation of the beer.

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Photo of wcudwight
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of the best looking beers I've ever seen. Dark chestnut colored with some georgous red hues. Looks like the color of a fine piece of furnature. Creamy almond colored head that rises to 2" and falls and holds at 1/4". Lot's of thick sticky lacing clings to the glass.
For all that's happening with the appearance there is little going on in the aroma. Big whiff of roasted malts. It's certainly not bad, but I was expecting more.
To me the aroma should be a prelude to the taste. In this particular beer the aroma is like test driving a Chevorlet Cavalier to buy a Corvette. This beer taste amazing! Lot's of roasted malts. Peat. Nutty. Raisins. Whole wheat toast. Mildly fruity. It's kind of like the alcohol gives it the fruity flavor and an ever so slight bite at the end. This beer makes me crave malts like I usually crave hops.
The mouthfeel is thick, chewy, and CREAMY!
Despite the huge flavors and high abv I could easily session this beer and I would probably pay for it later...but it wouldn't matter, b/c this beer is that good!!
I received this in a trade and whoever traded it to me. THANK YOU!!! Wanna trade for a sixer?

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Founders Dirty Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,815 ratings.