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Founders Bolt Cutter - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Bolt CutterFounders Bolt Cutter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,181 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,181
Reviews: 212
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 12.35%
Wants: 190
Gots: 709 | FT: 74
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  15.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
Bolt Cutter is a cellarable barley wine with an ABV of 15%. Dry-hopped with a mountain of Cascade hops, it’s balanced by a malty sweetness and spicy complexity, resulting from barrel aging some of it in bourbon barrels, some in maple syrup-bourbon barrels and some not at all (standard fermentation only). We’ve allowed the beer to mature in bottles and kegs since July so that it would be perfect for its release next month. Bolt Cutter pours a deep copper color and is best sampled at different temperatures to allow the flavors to unfold.

(Beer added by: Thickfreakness on 11-03-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Founders Bolt Cutter Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,181 | Reviews: 212 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Daniellobo
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Daniellobo, Dec 01, 2012
Photo of redlegacy
3/5  rDev -25.9%

redlegacy, Dec 01, 2012
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

reviewed from notes taken on 11/30/2012.

poured into boltcutter tulip glass.

Appearance: Copper orange bodied beer with a huge 2 fingers of thick and fluffy white head. Thick lacing coats all over the glass.

Smell: Pine hops. Really sweet pinaapple upside down cake with cherries. Almost a sherry or brandy sweetness in the nose of this beer.

Taste: Pineapple hops start this beer off. Tropical fruits, candied sugar, butterscotch. This beer is really sweet, but it got a bigger hop profile than I would like in an English Barleywine that adds balance. Maybe a little maple and bourbon, you really gotta work to find it though. Its got a bit of a booze kick that you can taste as a touch of astrigency.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Well carbonated beer, but its surprisingly still a little syrupy. Warming booze that slides down you throat.

Overall: I think the is a really good Barleywine. Its leaning more towards an American Barleywine, too much hop presence to be an English Barleywine. Its a really aggressive beer that a little rough around the edges right now. I do feel that this is going to be great with a few years on it. Age this beer and I think this will become alot closer to an English Barleywine in a few years. I wish the barrels had more presence that was the biggest dissapointment from this beer.

4DAloveofSTOUT, Dec 01, 2012
Photo of chase2634
4/5  rDev -1.2%

chase2634, Dec 01, 2012
Photo of FoundersPounder
4.83/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Small amounts of lace and deep amber, but still lighter than I expected.

S- Bourbon and Vanilla hit the nose instantly. Cinnamon, Nutmeg, even got a little Coffee and Chocolate in there somewhere. Extremely Flavorful.

T- A lot hoppier than I was expecting but what a pleasant surprise. Malt and Vanilla most prominent than the Bourbon/Boose, as it reveals its 15% ; still fantastic for an ABV that high.

M- Full bodied; Warming

O- Another fantastic brew from Founders. Might even be my 2nd favorite to date behind the CBS. Stocking up on this and plan on aging as many bottles as possible to share on special occasions for years to come.

Viva La Nemesis

FoundersPounder, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of Tucquan
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on 2012-11-22 in Pittsburgh, PA

A - Very hazy orange-brown with 1/3-finger tan head that fades fast and leaves mild lacing. Alcohol legs.

S - Hop floral, citrus, sweet, graham cracker, baked apple, bartlet pear, cherry.

T - Hop forward, dopplebock-like malt, caramel, pine, vinuous, cherry, rasin, apple/pear. Not overly sweet. Lingering bitter/piney finish balanced with enough of the other flavors. Taste improved as it continued to warm

M - Medium-heavy body and light carbonation. Resinous, prickly, not syrupy. Definitely a tongue-coater.

O - Quite good for such a high ABV brew. As a comparison, I liked this more than the Avery Mephistopholes.

Tucquan, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of brystmar
3.93/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Blind Tiger for VSK.

Lots of sweetness as caramely booze dominates the nose and seeps onto palate as well. Tastes like they liquified those little rectangular caramels you see wrapped in clear plastic at the grocery store. Pretty boozy from start to finish, even for a barleywine.

I liked this more than some of my peers did, but even still, my 4oz pour was more than enough. This has potential to shine very brightly in few years, hope to try it again with some age on it.

brystmar, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of beenitty
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

beenitty, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

iL0VEbeer, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of sneaks2210
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

sneaks2210, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of Jwren5
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Jwren5, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of Jammer42
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Jammer42, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of axeman9182
3.53/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

10 oz pour in a wine glass at Barcade for their Founders blowout.

Bolt Cutter pours a murky amber, with no visibility through to the other side of the glass. What flimsy bits of foam that are actually present disappear quickly. The nose has some mice malt and barrel components, with aromas of caramel, maple, and brown sugar all commingling. A little bit of a pine hop note shines through as well. While the bourbon is a little more present in the flavor profile, I have to say it's still remarkably smooth for being a 15% beer. Besides, the maple, caramel, and brown sugar all still trump the booziness in terms of intensity. Right at the end though a brash bitterness and a flash of piney hops crash the party. It just doesn't fit, it's akin to a harsh, jangling chord ringing out against an otherwise nice piece of music. The carbonation is nicely muted, but the body is noticeably syrupy, just a bit too much. As is, Bolt Cutter is an alright beer (though not up to Founders' usual standards). I think some time to let the out of place dry hop portion that was shoehorned into the blend mellow will do it some good though.

axeman9182, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of vfgccp
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Barcade BK, Founders tap night.

A - Low offwhite head with ok lace and retention. Cloudy burnt sienna, cognac body.

S - Huge apple brandy nose, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, dried apple, light caramel.

T - Soft round booze, caramel, dried apricot, vanilla extract, sharp oak, dark brown sugar. Long afterglow of warm booze caramel and nutmeg.

M - Expansive mouthfeel with a solid body. Great staying power without feeling syrupy.

O - Insanely smooth. I can't believe this is 15%; it could definitely get you into a world of trouble if you're not paying attention. A stellar barleywine.

vfgccp, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of Evan
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Evan, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of 1Adam12
4/5  rDev -1.2%

1Adam12, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of sideshowe
4/5  rDev -1.2%

sideshowe, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of mdfb79
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 11/28/12 notes. Had this on tap at the Blind Tiger VSK event in NYC. Had a sip from a friend and then an 8 oz. pour.

a - Pours an amber-clear reddish color with one inch of white head and low carbonation evident. Looks as expected.

s - Smells of bready malts, bourbon, oak, toasted malts, alcohol , caramel malts, toffee, and light vanilla. Good, but much more bready than I was expecting, and a decent amount of alcohol.

t - Tastes of bready malts, toasted malts, graham cracker, bourbon, oak, vanilla, caramel malts, dark fruits, toffee, alcohol, butterscotch, and biscuit. Again, tons of bread and toasted malts, but more dark fruit and caramel here than the nose. A small step up from the nose for me, but the alcohol is still there too.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Pretty thick and nice body, and some alcohol heat.

o - Overall I found this to be a good BA barleywine, but not great. While it does not taste liek it is necessarily 15% ABV, it is strong and the alcohol is there. Tons of bready and toasted malts, and some nice bourbon, I have one bottle of this and will hold onto it for a year or two to see if it mellows out a little bit. Good but not as good as some of the other Founders special beers.

mdfb79, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of Googs
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Googs, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of metalgdog
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

metalgdog, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of Rifugium
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Capone's, Norristown, PA

Slightly hazy ruby-copper pour with a thick ringlet of white foam; decent retention and a bit of lacing. Aroma was sweet and malty, toffee and butterscotch, and a hint of naphtha-like booze. Taste was pretty nice, but seemed to fade after the first couple sips for some reason. More malty goodness, toffee, butterscotch, dried maraschino cherries, some boozy heat, and a markedly bitter hop finish. The toffee sweetness faded as it warmed, otherwise my taste rating would possibly step up a notch. This wasn't quite a full-bodied beer, but on the upper end of medium, fairly mellow considering it's still pretty young, but will probably be a nice sipper in a year or two.

Hence I will save my bottles until then.

Rifugium, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of zeff80
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, ruby/copper color with a one finger, dark, khaki-colored head of foam. It left thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled sweet, malty and boozy.

T - This is so boozy. It is malty with caramel, toffee and butterscotch. It had a strong alcohol heat.

M - It was sharp and smooth. A full bodied ale with clean finish.

O - This is a very big, boozy barleywine. Glad I was able to get some and share some.

zeff80, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of vobr0002
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- brownish amber in color, murky appearance with white head that lingers.

S- boozy, toffee, caramel, bread, floral, slight citrus.

T- caramel, toffee, sweetness. Very thick and lots of hop bitterness. Lot of alcohol warmth and some bourbon on the back end.

M- thick full body with lots of carbonation.

O- this is a very good beer. Well worth seeking out and enjoying. Easy sipper.

vobr0002, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of TVolt1
4.4/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A; Beautiful amber colored beer with a small amount of off white head. It is a little cloudy but all in all I think it has a great appearance.

S: I am having a hard time smellin .gthis beer. I think I smell a lot of grains, small amount of hops, and a lemony.

T: Very nice, smooth taste. For a 15%er, it went down extremely smooth. It has a nice bitter finish.

M: Great, thick mouthfeel with medium carbnonation.

O: OVerall, a delicious beer! I am glad I spent a few hours driving around to find it! It was well worth the effort!

TVolt1, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of Optifron
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed 11/18/2012 on-tap during Founders say at Crane Alley in Urbana, IL

Appearance: Dark reddish brown. Thin lingering white head.

Aroma: Malty. A bit boozy, but definitely less so than expected. Sweet malty aroma.

Taste: Really mellow for 15% ABV. Pretty balanced sweetness with some nice hop finish. Definitely on the hop end of balance.

Mouthfeel: Smooth. Residual mouth watery sweetness. Have had smoother beers.

Overall: Delicious barleywine, albeit less than I hoped for Founder’s anniversary. Hides the booze well. Would certainly drink it throughout winter if it was moderately priced, but passed up my chance to buy it at $21/750mL bottle.

Optifron, Nov 28, 2012
Founders Bolt Cutter from Founders Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,181 ratings.