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Founders Dirty Bastard - Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Dirty BastardFounders Dirty Bastard

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6,115 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 6,115
Reviews: 1,669
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.89%
Wants: 216
Gots: 1,010 | FT: 23
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,115 | Reviews: 1,669 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of matjack85
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I found a 6 pack of these squatty 12oz brown bottles at Springbrook Liquors in Bloomingdale, IL. $14 a six-pack with tax included, so not cheap. No freshness date or any information about the beer except on the neck label where it lists the alcohol content at 8.5% and the IBU's at 50.

The beer poured a dark ruby color but turned violet when held directly to the light. I could only get a 1 finger tan head out of it that lasted only about a minute, and only produced a moderate amount of spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

The smell was really malty, as would be expected for this style and considering they brew this stuff with 7 different malts. I'm picking up caramel, roasted malts, and even a bit of chocolate aroma along with some dark fruits.

Nice malty sweetness, but balanced with 50 IBU's worth of hops. Lots of caramel, roasted malt, and bittersweet chocolate flavor along with a little fruitiness (dark rather than citrus). Then all of a sudden the hops kick in and the beer goes from a sweet start to a slightly bitter and alcoholic dry finish. Well made and delicious.

Rich and smooth mouthfeel leaning close to full bodied with only moderate carbonation.

Very easy to drink despite the 8.5% alcohol. You really only feel it in the swallow and it's not overpowering, so I'll have no reservations about opening a second one.

Photo of TheSupremeAJ
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle from Abe's of Bethlehem, PA poured into pint glass. The bottle was a wee dusty.

A- Beer pours an unusual velvet red/brown color with a thick tan head that slowly rises... and falls to an thin, opaque head.

S- Boozey, a little rough, sweet and roasted.

T- Borderline porter qualities with a wee bit of a scotchy edge. Not quite as roasty as a porter, and has some sweet caramel there as well.

M- A little thick and sticky on the palate. Medium-low carb. It is very balanced despite the variety of characteristics that this beer is accomplishing.

D- Drinkability is medium to low. This is a sipper, however it is good.

Photo of bensamann
4.22/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After pouring into a pint glass, there was about a fingers' width of a head, which slowly dissipated. There was a nice malty aroma. The texture was smooth. Caramel highlights the taste. For me, this is an ale that needs to be slowly drank for maximum enjoyment.

Photo of speter
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep clear amber with a one-finger tan head that quickly fades, but leaves impressive lacing.

S: Roast malt, brown sugar, and a hint of maple.

T: This is an amazingly complex beer. Of course, it's a total malt-bomb from front to finish, but there are various waves of flavors that make the journey worthwhile. The front is your typical high-gravity malt sweetness, but near the center, the brown sugar and maple overtones become apparent. Then, into the finish, where you would expect hop bitterness to balance things, the dirty bastard gives you a burst of roasted barley.

M: Rich and full with a bit of warmth.

D: This is one amazing wee heavy. A bit too rich for more than one, but you'd certainly like another.

Photo of MoreThanWine
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 2" tan head which took a while to dissipate to 1/8". Dark clear burnt umber brown color. Smell is caramel. Rich taste has hints of coffee, malt, and a medium body. Really very easy drinking with nothing to offend. My only complaint is I'm not sure what makes this a "dirty bastard", it is not strong or harsh or unusual enough to match the name. But good beer.

Photo of Suds
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is a deep copper color with a slight tan-head. It's quite clear, with a low carbonation. The aroma is intensely malty and caramel-like, with a sweet quality. It's an enticing beer, although it's also got a little more hop aroma than a traditional Scottish ale. The taste is similar in that it has a firm bitterness and hop presence. The malt, though, is the centerpiece. Caramel, toast, earthy, sweet...nice. Medium in body, with a solidly bitter finish. Yum.

Photo of SkunkWorks
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at TJ Finelys in Bayport, NY. I'm not entirely sure what kind of glass this is, but the closest I am finding is a stemmed pokal glass. Its kind of like the Rogue Santa's Reserve glass to give you an idea.

Look: hard to tell exactly given the lighting of the bar, but its fairly dark brown with a tan, one finger head with excellent retention but not a whole lot of lacing.

Smell: dark caramel, a bit of alcohol, and some spiciness. Its quite strong but fairly straight forward without a whole lot of nuance.

Taste: follows the nose. Rich, dark caramel taste stands out with a good amount of alcohol present. A bit of burnt sugar and a bit of spicy hops are the only other flavors. The finish is fairly dry and the hop spiciness lingers.

Feel: medium to full bodied, moderate carbonation, noticeable alcohol warmth especially for the alcohol content, and lingering bitterness in the finish.

Drink: more a sipper than a chugger, I only had one that night and that was enough. However, this is probably the intention given the style so I won't hold it against them.

Overall, one of the first Scotch ales I've really liked and the first wee heavy I've had to date. It was good and I would recommend giving this beer a try if it was available to you. Cheers!

Photo of Justin23060
4.22/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured opaque dark brown, not much head. Smell is mostly carmel with faint dried fruit (date?). Taste is caramel sweetness at first with a not too overly dry finish. Dried fruit as it warms. Carbination is nice with some creaminess and a perfect warmth for the style.

Overall I would recommend this without any reservations. My second favorite Scotch Ale.

Photo of PDXHops
4.3/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap in a shaker pint. Deep hazy brownish amber capped with with an off-white head that hangs around with impressive tenacity and leaves a ton of drippy lacing.

Intense malty nose, toasted, sweet and carmelized with flashes of dark fruit and overripe citrus. Hints of chocolate and earthy hops. Surprisingly, a quick burst of citrusy hops starts things off, but that's soon swallowed up on a wave of delicious malts. Loads of dark fruits- figs, dates, berries- swimming in caramel and brown sugar. A touch toasty and more than a little creamy. Quite a viscous body; this beer is a meal in itself. The finish is sticky sweet with a bit of earthiness. Dangerously drinkable, with only a small amount of alcohol warmth.

Overall impression: Great stuff, highly recommended.

Photo of Jesstyr
3.38/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is one of my favorite styles of beer, and I actually think that Founders may have struck out a bit, at least in my opinion.

Pours amber brown, hazy, with a full two fingers of bright white head. Nose is very light, a little malty, but none of the big malty sweetness you expect from the style.

Taste has a good deal of smokiness and malt, very nutty overall. More of a porter than a scotch ale in my opinion, lacking the sweetness and the caramel nature I've come to expect. Overall there is an overbalance of hops to malt for a scotch ale, but that doesnt make this a bad beer by any means at all. Light medium body, and a decent drinkability.

Photo of jale
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Reno's west in Lansing.

A: Pours a hazy brown with a quarter of a light tan head.

S; Caramel malt aroma with slight hops.

T: Sweet malt flavor with a nice hop finish. Not simply a malt bomb like many in this stlye. nice balance of sweet and bitter.

M; Nice carbonation. Not sticky or cloying like some.

D; Would drink another

Photo of BeerBuckeye
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark reddish/brown, a little hazy even. Minimal head.

S - Roasted malts, somewhat caramel-y though. A faint hint of fruits.

T - Sort of a blend of nuts and caramel. A little bit of sweetness and some mild bitterness on the end. Just full of robust flavor; the whiskey-ness of this beer is not overpowering, just subtle

M - Very nice, thick and creamy. The carbonation comes through if you just let it sit in the mouth for a moment. The finish is very, very balanced.

D - Remarkably drinkable. I'm not sure where they are hiding the alcohol in this, but I feel like I could drink this down with my breakfast.

Overall - Delicious. The balance of sweet and bitter is very nice. The taste was just very full and robust, I really appreciated it. Bravo, Founders

Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A rich hazy brown. Very dark. Little head but a good ring around the glass.

Rich malty aroma. A lot of dark fruits like figs and some musty grapes. Tangy toffee malt with a faint roast.

Roasted and sweet then dark fruits take over. A bitterness similar to what is found from tannins in grapes but flavor drifting more towards cherry. Malty finish.

Medium/Heavy body smooth but lingering bite from the alcohol.

Photo of engagechad
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I purchased this bottle as a single at Corks and Kegs in Richmond, VA - served in a DFH snifter - let warm up for approx 2 minutes

Popped the top and poured, this beer poured wonderfully. This beer has a decent head, adequate lacing and overall an okay appearance. It was a hazy reddish orange, quite opaque.

Floral and perfumey on the nose with heavy malts.

Upon sampling the foam it's exploding all over with floral tid bits, then once I dive into the beverage below it becomes almost a milky taste and feel. It sounds weird, but it was amazing. I had doubts for this beer because the word "scotch" was in it and I hate scotch but I was impressed a lot. The overall taste was of floral, milky malt if I had to put a word on it.

Felt amazing on the mouth, smooth and weighted but not heavy. I read others that say this is a sipper but not for me, I felt as though it were smooth enough to take in gulps and I found myself doing just that.. before long it was all over and I was sad..

For 8.9 this beer is VERY drinkable (which is scary). The ethanol is hidden quite well


Photo of Guitarctica
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Dark brown with a tan head that dissipates quickly. Not particularly good lacing.

S - Good nose. Some sweetness, dark fruites like raisins and somewhat grape-like.

T - Very hop forward. Good carbonation. Light alcohol taste considering it's 8.5% so it's masked well. Finishes with biscuit-like yeast and a bitterness that lingers.

M - Medium body. Not particularly smooth though. The carbonation continues to tingle the roof of my mouth. I kind of like that actually.

D - Couldn't drink too many considering the bitterness. However I realize that is customary for this style of beer. Reminds me of a good IPA with a nice complex taste.

Photo of paulozanello
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy light brown reddish color with a beige head that last for a while leaving average lacing.
Smell is very faint, with a caramel malt and herbal hops.
Taste is very pleasant with nutty and caramel start and a herbal hoppy finish. Aftertaste is lasting with a sweet malts and roasted notes.
Body is medium to light with moderate to high carbonation. This has a nice clean mouthfeel. I can't believe this is 8.5% abv. It hides really well.
Another nice drinkable beer from Founders.

Photo of dball
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The low IBUs make this beer very smooth and not too heavy. The scotch style ale is not always and favorite but this one has a mild enough flavor to feel just right and be very drinkable. The color is a deep dark brown almost black. Suprisingly the smell is plain. The Dirty Bastard tastes pretty darn good. Overall this is a solid and good beer if you like a smooth and mild (for scotch ale standards), yet strong scotch ale.

Photo of cavedave
4.28/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A thin, dark beige head sits atop a deep cordovan, cloudy beer. Some oily lace clings to the glass. Finally only a bubbly ring remains.

A light aroma of caramel, herbal hop, and a hint of citrus and floral. Simple, appealing.

Medium/full flavored, starting with a sweet dark caramel,some bready sweet, quickly joined by herbal bitter that balances well. It finishes with a hint of pine resin, and the sweet becoming more roasty, as the bitter sustains a nicely dry finish. As it warms, alcohol adds some spicy vapors.

Mouthfeel is medium body, lightly carbonated, quite viscous without a lot of resin buildup, and an excellent finish. Creamy, silky feel to it.

Dirty Bastard is supremely drinkable. I could drink this until Earth resembles Mars.

Impression: So glad Founders is here in NY State. This beer is crafted beautifully, is delicously drinkable and refreshing for a big beer. Get this if you see it.

Photo of ne0m00re
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Live review of a 12 oz bottle (bottled 12/01/10).
A: Deep clear red, it poured with a decent dark tan head that died to a good film and collar with lacing.
S: Musty booze, nice orange and oaky hops, sweet corny malt like a buttery biscuit. Good.
T: Creamy whiskey booze, sweet biscuit malt is not as buttery as the smell indicated, the hops are balanced with a nice earthiness, brown sugar and cinnamon play rolls in it as well. It's a good one.
M: Thicker and with a creamy carbonation.
D: One bottle is good.

Photo of Bogforce
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My first beer from Founders..

A: Dark brown with hints of ruby color, small head that goes away quickly. Decent lacing.

S: Robust coffee smell. Also can smell the alcohol

T: Gets a good punch of the alcohol on the tongue, but a nice butter coffee flavor

M: Kind of bites your tongue with the alcohol

D: Could definitely drink a couple of the these in a sitting but not much more

Photo of CPeterson
3.73/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A -- A deep amber / copper brew that pours with a quickly settling head that leaves a wisp of foam of the top and streaky lacing.

S -- Roasty sweet malts and a hint of earthy peat smoke, caramel and dark fruits.

T -- A huge caramel sweetness fades into a woody / earthy dryness and ends with a bitter piney twang that lasts a while.

M -- Thick and rich with a full body, a bit drier than I would expect.

D -- A solid offering, even though I expected quite a bit more peat smoke on the tongue. A good purchase for fans of the style, well rounded.

Photo of godlessape
3.73/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at The Porter, in the Little 5 Points neighborhood in Atlanta. It's a great little beer bar that sports over 430 beers.

Appearance: An ominous dusky, light-less cloudy brown with dark cherry highlights, hinting at an overt aggressiveness in flavor. The small head stays throughout.

Smell: Just a faint malty darkness.

Taste: Pure Scotch ale power. Toffee and caramel, along with chocolate notes and a smokey, hoppy, oaken cheap scotch fire like someone stubbed out a cigarette on your tongue. That's what I expect from a Scotch ale.

Mouthfeel: Heavy at first, then the alcohol runs for the back of the neck.

Drinkability: I could do it again and probably will, but not all night long.

Photo of soju6
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy chestnut color with a very small off-white head that fades to lacing.

S: Has a dark fruit and malt aroma with traces of spice and sweetness. Very subtle hint of alcohol, not overpowering.

T: taste is a mixture of dark fruit and alcohol with some malt and a touch of spicy sweetness.

F: Medium body, very smooth and quite creamy. Has a pleasant warming feeling.

D: Great sipping brew on a cold winter night. Good example of the style.

Photo of tgorgz
4.45/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured into a standard pint glass. Dark carmel colour, not many bubbles. It started off with a two-finger head, and then dissipated into a half-finger with lingering lacing.
S: Not as malty as I expected, but with an abundance of caramel.
T:At the beginning, it's sweet-but not overpoweringly so. The middle is filled with caramel and toffee, but more so on the caramel. This is promptly followed by the appearance of the oaken flavours found in Scotch whiskey, and the beer finishes in this way.
M: Pleasantly thick and quite chewy. It moves well throughout the mouth, and the taste of oak definitely lingers on your palate. At 8.5%, I would have expecting more of a boozy taste than I got- not that I mind not having it.
D: Very drinkable, but I wouldn't put this one down too quickly. Definitely quite enjoyable

Photo of tewaris
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with illegible bottling date poured into a New Belgium snifter on 16/12/2010. Judging by how aggressive this particular beer was, and because it's one of Founders flagship beers, I would guess that it wasn't too old.

Appearance 3/5
Molten copper and rusty hued with a medium tan head. Medium retention and lacing, and lots of disgusting chunks!

Aroma 4/5
A very delicious aroma comprising of caramel, toast, perfumy alcohol, dessert. Much like Scotch whisky, with bready beerness to it.

Taste 4/5
Flavorful and aromatic with the same notes that were present in the aroma, but a tad too bitter and astringent from roasted barley/malts, I am assuming. Fairly roasty and cleansing finish but some sweetness manages to linger. Fruity flavors in the after breath that are akin to Scotch. Quite astringent towards the end, but without the wood.

Mouthfeel 3/5
Low carbonation, which is proper; the body is thinner than what I'd like. A stronger body and sweetness are terribly needed in my opinion.

Drinkability 3.5/5
Not bad, but the malt complexity wavers, faced with strong, one-dimensional roastiness.

Founders Dirty Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 6,115 ratings.