Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

Founders Devil Dancer | Founders Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
very good
1,475 Reviews
Read the review
Founders Devil DancerFounders Devil Dancer

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Triple IPA. Dry-hopped for twenty-six days straight with a combination of 10 hop varieties. 112 actual IBU; although it calculates to over 200!

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-17-2004

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,475 | Ratings: 5,000
Photo of Dukeofearl
3.54/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle brought back to California from Merchants Fine Wine in Dearborn Heights, MI; purchased in March 2008, tasted in late May. Price not recorded.

Pours a deep rich amber, syrupy like in texture, with almost no hint of carbonation, and nothing I could call a head. A few bubbles stick to the side of the Duvel glass.

Aroma is a rich Imperial IPA malt profile and an evil amount of hoppy goodness- bitter but also a slightly sweet citrus idea there in the mix.

Flavor is a huge slap upside the head... I mean tongue. Nothing subtle here- this one is at or more than some of the biggest doouble IPAs in flavor and intensity. Roasty malts that are rich and full- reminds me of some of the rye beers I have tried. Hops abound, a mix of tongue slapping oily juniper and grapefruity citrus. Wow.

A surprising amount of creaminess helps the mouthfeel, very syrupy. However, the unabashed alcohol burn really detracts- some of the best IIPAs I have had make me wonder "do they put any alcohol in this?" from the flavor- this one screams ALCOHOL from every corner. That takes away from the enjoyment.

Overall, my first "triple IPA", and an interesting expereiment. Good, but not something I shout about. I like Founders beers (so far), and I like this one, but don't love it.

 1,282 characters

Photo of ph2001
3.76/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had both as a 12 oz bottle in a pint glass and on tap in a snifter

it pours an amber color with red highlights. seems very hoppy with stong aftertaste. the bitterness hits just at the end of the sip. the alcohol is warming. thick and syrupy, but it still goes down smooth.

 273 characters

Photo of GPHarris
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a - poured a one finger thick creamy tan head into a snifter that left good sheeting and lacing. the body was a dark amber color.
s - smells sticky sweet. very malty with a hint of floral hops.
t - tastes of deep fruits, piney and earthy hops, syrupy caramel. not as much of a hop bomb or overly bitter as you might expect from something at 13% ABV and labeled as a "triple ipa" but you do get a lot of hops in the aftertaste. it tastes great and is very complex.
m - thick and coating.
d - watch out! if it didn't say 13% on the bottle i never would have guessed it. goes down easily.

 585 characters

Photo of skiboy
4.43/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This particular brew is best poured by simply turning the bottle upside down and letting it glurg into your pint glass. This gives a nice aromatic and tenacious head that laces very nicely. Very malty, even sweetish, yet not as hoppy nor alcoholic as one might expect. Definitely not a session beer, in fact, as delicious as one is, two is definitely too many.

 360 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
3.97/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in trade from mcallister, thanks for the opportunity.
Pours a cloudy deep amber/copper color with a minimal head and little lacing. Aroma says Hops with capitol letters. Grapefruit, pine, resin, flowers they are all there. A little caramel malt tries its best to peak through. Taste is a sticky caramel malt infused with pine trees, grapefruits, resins, etc. Not as overly bitter as I thought it might be, or maybe my palette has been killed by IBU's. Thick mouthfeel, medium carbonation. I enjoyed this more than I thought I would, decent brew.

 554 characters

Photo of Gavage
4.34/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a hazy orange color with a 2" thick head that falls quickly to a thick surface foam.

Smell: loads of pine and grapefruit leap out of the glass. Some hints of alcohol are also there.

Taste: big malt profile here with a heavy dose of grapefruit and pine. Some green apples, honey, and alcohol round out this well balanced hop bomb.

Mouthfeel: heavy in body. Lightly crisp and dry to start, but finishes dry and smooth. Aftertaste is very long as the bitterness rides the tongue for what seems several minutes.

Drinkability: killer beer here. The high ABV puts a damper on having more than one or two in a session, but this is relatively easy to quaff this faster than you should.

 700 characters

Photo of beachbum1975
3.63/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Notes from a bottle I drank on May 6, 2008 with friends.

Thanks for this bottle abankovich! I got this as a gift at the 1st Cincinnati BA Gathering in Catskellar on May 1st.

No freshness date on my 12oz bottle poured into a Samuel Adams pint glass at approximately 50°F.

A: Pours a murky & evil looking reddish-amber nectar with a super thin, tan head that doesn't stay long - very little carbonation after the pour with little lacing.

S: Pine hops BLAST from hell, subtle malt flavors linger with grain alcohol and prunes (or figs?). I can see this is gonna take me for a ride.

T: Much like the smell, I tasted uber piney hops, dark fruits with caramel malts toward the middle. The alcohol comes through (as expected) on the finish.

M: Full bodied. May burn tastebuds with continued usage.

D: Worth a try and definitely unique, but remain conscientious of the ABV percentage. Before you know it, you'll be on the floor. As such, drinkability score dips a bit.

Glad I had to opportunity to try this one...

 1,016 characters

Photo of AylwinForbes
4.4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had been waiting for this for ages and the local Binny's provides as if by magic. Intrigued to investigate this ultra-hopped monster. Pours a rich syrupy chestnut (lovely warm color) with very little carbonation evident, no head, minimal lacing. Dark malty, floral hop aroma. On the palate, noticeable sweetness to begin, complex caramel malt tones, I did not think the hops overdone here oddly enough, stretching out to a lingering drier espresso bitter finish. It was redolent of an aged oloroso sherry or Madeira and almost the same alcohol level. Also thought it a bit like a darker, maltier Brown Shugga with more depth. Others have commented on the obvious alcohol (it is high); but I did not find it intrusive at all. Sipping and contemplation essential.

 763 characters

Photo of albern
3.48/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is just too over the top for my tastes. This is clearly more of a liqueur along the Gran Marnier line, or perhaps an aggressively hopped up version of a barley wine is an apt description, but as a double IPA, this is just too much. I do not care for the throaty alcohol burn and prefer instead beers that mask their rather high ABV. At 13%, maybe that is asking too much. The beer pours a ruby brown, with a sticky and syrupy consistency, minimal lacing, no head, no retention. The smell is the best part and outstanding in its own right. The aroma is intense brown sugars, caramel, liqueur, thick syrupy malts, and heavy fruits of the fig and raisin variety. The taste is just overpowered by the alcohol, but underneath it all you will find a pretty hopped up beer, and intense brown sugar malts, caramels, and liqueur ... lots of it. This is a thick and full bodied beer with quite a throaty aftertaste that will requires some neutralization before trying anything else. I would suggest drinking this one last in any beer tasting session. good luck with this one. I don't think I can finish it. It truly is a sipping beer.

 1,134 characters

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this brew in a trade with bluemoonswoon, thanks Mark!

12oz bottle, served in a tulip glass.

L - murky, brown color with a small tan layer of foam that did leave some fine lacing.

S - aroma is a blend of bitter and floral hops, sweet malts and alcohol.

T - sweet malty flavor is followed with total hop bitterness to the max! It is unique, that's for sure.

F - chewy, thick feel, full bodied brew.

D - it takes an hour or more to finish one, but it's time well spent.

 478 characters

Photo of Phillyduke
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a Riedel stemless wine glass. Beer is a cloudy amber/red. Despite a vigorous pour, I had difficulty obtaining any head save a small fizzy layer that quickly dissipated. Some fine, fuzzy lacing clings to the side of the glass.

S: Incredibly intense floral/citrus hop aroma mixed with alcohol combine to render a scent nearly identical to Grand Marnier. It's quite intriguing for a beer.

T: Initially sweet taste reminds me of a liqueur. Ultra bitter hoppiness asserts itself on the swallow and aftertaste. I'm having trouble detecting the citrus and floral amid the bittering hops and thick malt backbone. Alcohol is quite prominent and takes more of a starring role as the beer warms. Tastes closer to a barleywine than an IPA.

M: Thick and syrupy, with only a touch of carbonation. Again, more of a liqueur feel than an average beer.

D: What qualifies as "drinkable" for a 13% ABV Triple IPA? This is definitely a sipping beer, and not one to be taken lightly. It is very boozy when young, so some age might take the edge off a bit. Can't say I'd reach for one of these often or invest in more than a few a year. Still, it's an interesting "extreme" beer that truly pushes the envelope.

 1,206 characters

Photo of drumrboy22
4.37/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review #100. Thanks to EliteDigger for this one. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Harpoon IPA glass. This beer looked thick and creamy as I poured it. Beer was a dark copper color with a small, nut brown head. Soft, smooth carbonation.

Aroma was huge hops, citrus, malt, sugar and pine.

Taste was an explosion of hops, with some notes of toffee and malt in the background.

Very creamy and chewy mouthfeel. This is a definite sipper. Long, long bitter finish. I've been wanting to try this for awhile and it didn't disappoint. Thanks again to EliteDigger. This was a nice treat.

 582 characters

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to dschuster03 for this extra.

Pours a soupy deep ruby and brown with slight haze and a thick off white head that hangs around all day (vigorous pour) Nose is of malt sweetness and thick hop resin. Taste follows with significant hop resin flavors and a very sweet thick malt body. Some citrus/pine hop flavors in here, and alot of spiced hop flavors as well. Malt presence is huge. Alcohol on the finish, with lingering hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is VERY viscous and syrupy. Drinkability is pretty amazing for the 13% abv. Overall a very interesting beer. Very much a sipper, but sure doesn't feel like it. An enjoyable brew, but one is enough for about a year. I think I prefer Midnight Sun's Gluttony, but just by a nose or so. They're both good.

 755 characters

Photo of paco1029384756
4.87/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Dark ruby copper appearance, small head with perfect lacing. Strong scent of hops, slight blueberry, citrus, molasses, honey. Intense hop flavor, with strong bitterness, caramel, slight citrus, prunes; some yeast in the finish. Commendably smooth mouth feel, lingering bitterness, just remarkable.

An excellent beer, a top notch Imperial IPA. Incredible smoothness for the huge hoppy flavor and clinging bitterness. An entirely relaxing and immensely enjoyable beer. Please go buy some.

 487 characters

Photo of zdk9
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a dark orange tinted brown color. There's only a thin film of head on the top, but it stay until the end and leaves great rings of lacing on my tulip glass.

S- I notice the hops of the beer much more on the nose than in the taste. There's some pineapple, mango, lemon, and pithy bitter orange- just bordering on grapefruit without getting there. The fruit is inviting. Is there any malt smell? Some but faint and overpowered by the hops.

T- I'm fronted by a wall of flavor. There's some sugary tastes- sort of brown sugar esque, but maybe closer to cane syrup. The hops are strong, leaving their mark of tropical fruit and woodiness. Decicious and strong.

M- SO viscous. And the bitterness clings deeply to my mouth.

D- Strong alcohol, strong flavor. Another great brew from Founders.

 797 characters

Photo of crayphish
3.57/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've been wanting to try Devil Dancer for quite some time, the beer was good, but not great. This 'triple' IPA poured a deep copperish red. I tried to get a decent head each pour but was left with sparce thin caps. Moderate lacing from such a sparce head. Smell was pungent sweetness and hot alcohol hops. Taste was a nice balance of caramel malt and piney resiny hops. The alcohol heat makes it hard to discern much of anything, but thats not a bad thing in my book. Mouthfeel was blasted to death by alcohol and hops. Perhaps the sweetness lasted too long. I drank two of these brews in a sitting and found it to be quite enough.

 631 characters

Photo of IBUnit63
4.29/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 12 oz. to Cab glass...

Deep caramel body with nice haze. Head is thin and dissipates quickly after pour.

A malty, caramel, floral hop bomb. Syrup-like texture on the nose - alcohol evaporates aroma into the air qith great and quick diffusion. Wow.

Everything you need in an extreme IPA -= copious floral, slightly soapy hop bitterness blending well with salty and nutty roasted malt and viscous alcohol presence. Finish is not so much unbalanced as overloaded. Impressive; even with grapefruit rind on finihs, not as fruity as a lot of hop bombs. This doesn't need that.

Warm and comfortable (like a sleeping bag) mouthfeel - almost cozy. Breeze of alcohol lends some coolness and burn to this camping trip.

This is amazing, well-crafted stuff that is of course very filling, so definitely built to savor.

 815 characters

Photo of Slynger
3.82/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Devil Dancer pours a clear, deep, rosey orange color with the barest amount of off-white bubbles melting quickly away.

The aroma is powerful and sweet caramel and toffee smelling malts backed by heavy, sugary, citric hops and brandy like alcohol.

Full and thick body with a stout-like syrupy smoothness to it. The flavor has a heavy and sweet maltiness to it. Caramel, toffee, and brown sugar all push against each other, but the power of the citrus hops pushes pushes back with equal force, balancing out the brew. Deep orange and grapefruit sweetness enter and bring a riney bitterness that sticks through the finish along with some pleasant, warming, alcohol.

Definitely strong and a sipper, but a refined and soothing one that can be enjoyed and appreciated with each sip.

 779 characters

Photo of Atron67
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- poured a big red copper body. there was a light tan head on top that never built up but fell down quickly and was never that impressive. crystal clear body, medium carbonation

S- rather subdued citrus and piney charachter, little disapointed in the strength of it, however the actual smell itself is awesome. not that stroong but very nice. the malt underneath is really small. it is surprizingly well hidden for a 13 abv beer.

T- this strikes me more as an american barleywine than an IIPA. starts off with a really strong maltiness which is quite delicious. as the maltiness explodes the hoppiness onsets and becomes much stronger, however i dont think it can really fit as an IPA. the bitterness comes in with grassy notes. really delicious.

M- full thick as body with light carbonation, woulda appreciated more carbonation

D- a great sipper

 851 characters

Photo of russpowell
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

got this from joe1510, cheers!

Pours an orange hued chestnut with 1 finger of tan head. Viscous look to this. Above average head retention & good lacing

S: Piney & cakey, plus brown sugar

T: Piney, with much cakeyness & a touch of pralines up front. Leafy hops, toffee, boozeyness, woody dryness are all in your face as this warms. Finishes with some orange peel, cakeyness, resiny hops, & some baker's chocolate, almost pulled a 5.0

MF: So chewy& a bit sticky, a moderate amount of carbonation pushes the hops out there a bit. Balances great all things considered

This is a bruiser, although I enjoyed the hell out of it; the complexity & abv weigh on you after a while

 675 characters

Photo of mhewes
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A : Pours a cloudy orange amber. Very thin head that sticks around for a little bit

S : Hoppy with a touch of malt. You can definitely smell the alcohol

T : Lots of piney, malty taste with a hop finish. It's a good medium between the hops and the malt.

M : Creamy and chewy. Talk about a thick beer.

D : Definitely a sipper. Touch to finish a entire bottle.

 361 characters

Photo of ndekke39
4.47/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had a bottle of this sitting in the cellar for a couple months, purchased from Founder's itself. The notch indicates it was bottled in March 2008, so it's a recent edition.

Decanted into a pint glass. Pours a clear, rich honey-orange color. Thick, foamy white head that descends in a consistent layer. Not much lacing. But the beer is very appealing.

Smell starts with a piny, citrusy swell of hops, but there's a decent maltiness to off-set it. Some caramel grains.

Flavors really travel well. It starts with a big honey, caramel malty blast - not what you'd expect from a Triple IPA. There's a strong dash of the piny hops in the middle of the tongue, and then that fades. Then, about five seconds later, the aftertaste kicks in a HUGE wallop of hops. There's your 200+ IBUs! Pretty fun experience.

Mouthfeel is moderately thick. Goes perfectly with the rich maltiness and big hops.

This is an interesting beer. At first it hints at a big West Coast hoppiness, but it's balanced out nicely with some bold sweet flavors. For a beer that boasts high IBUs, it's really a dynamic beer, not one that just rakes your palate with extreme hoppiness.

 1,153 characters

Photo of ColForbinBC
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at Flat Rock Saloon in Manayunk; 12 oz bottle poured into a pint

A bright and cloudy orange amber with a fluffly white cap with serious staying power and gobs of sticky lacing.

The first thing that hits the nostrils is ganja. Then, big sweet malts and piney/citrus hops burst onto the scene and seize control of your brain. There is a good amount of alcohol present.

Taste is of alcohol, citrus hops, ganja, sweet caramel malt, and pine needles with a huge dose of bitterness. A big bitter alcoholy iiipa. Exactly what you were expecting.

Chewy, creamy, full and rich.

To be honest, the drinkability is a little rough. It is 13% and real bitter. You pretty much take it all in stride.

Only the second beer I have been able to get my lips on from Founders and I am already a big fan of this brewery. High five to those guys!

Additional notes added on 7-23-11

 873 characters

Photo of John_M
2.53/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Had this beer on tap at The Drafting Room Hopfest the other day. It was easily the worst beer I tasted.

The beer pours a striking orange color with good head retention and lacing. I have to say right off that it's a bit darker then I expect for a DIPA. I don't get a lot on the nose, just a hint of citrus with what smells like some seriously sweet malt.

On the palate this beer is nothing short of disgusting. The flavors aren't off, but this beer is so sweet, the alcohol and malt completely dominate the hops. This has to be one of the heaviest, most tiring beers I've ever sampled. The beer is medium to full bodied and is pretty smooth. As for drinkabilty, I couldn't come close to finishing just the 5 ounce sampler this beer came in.

I love hoppy DIPA's, but the sweet malt and alcohol completely mask the hops. The beer tastes almost out of balance it's so sweet, malty and heavy on the alcohol. Granted, I know this DIPA is made in the so called East Coast style, so undoubtedly that's part of the problem for me (I prefer the less malty West Coast style), but regardless, this beer is just over the top sweet and boozy. Unless you are feeling particularly mascochistic, I wouldn't recommend this beer to anyone.

7/3/10 edit. Tried this beer fresh and on tap at the Big Hunt yesterday. While marginally better then what I tried previously, the fact remains that this is a sweet, boozy, borderline unbalanced DIPA that is about as undrinkable as any DIPA I've ever sampled. Obviously, it's popular with some folks, but I'll be damned if I can see the appeal.

 1,571 characters

Photo of yourefragile
3.55/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: Hard pour creates a thick, bubbly tannish head with a surprisingly dark, translucent amber/red color. Head quickly dissipates to a thin film with some large bubbles and very little streaky lacing.
S: Very piney hop smell with a slight smell of alcohol that becomes much stronger as the beer warms up. Also some malt hiding behind the hops, more of a boozy barleywine smell than expected for an IIPA.
T: Very little carbonation, thicker medium body and smooth, almost syrup like. Very strong malt body throughout resulting in a sweeter flavor than expected with a very dry, complex bitter hop finish. Mostly a piney taste, not much citrus. More of a barley wine than a IIPA. As expected for 13%, alcohol is very present and lingers in the finish. I'm not particularly crazy about this beer and will probably avoid this in the future.

 877 characters

Founders Devil Dancer from Founders Brewing Company
3.93 out of 5 based on 5,000 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!