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Founders Harvest Ale | Founders Brewing Company

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1,091 Reviews
Founders Harvest AleFounders Harvest Ale

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.60%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
70 IBU

Added by granger10 on 10-24-2004

For Trade:
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Reviews: 1,091 | Ratings: 4,392
Photo of Arbitrator
3.2/5  rDev -24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Chilled bottle into a glass. A generous extra from KeefD. Thanks Keith!

A: Pours a hazy orange-amber color topped with an off-white head. Retention is moderate and there is some intricate ivy lacing down the sides.

S: Damn, this is like sniffing orange juice. Lots of orange pulp that gradually blossoms into grapefruit and tropical aromas. But primarily orange.

T: Tastes like orange up front, with a stronger variety than sensed in the nose. Grapefruit, apricot, pineapple in the mid-taste. There's a small trickling of biscuit malt that is nearly hidden by a strong grassy flavor. The finish is a moderate rubbery ethanol flavor that reminds me of a badly dry-hopped homebrew (no offense to my homebrewing friends).

M: Medium-bodied, high carbonation. Pretty cleansing, but it can't erase that rubbery astringency that closes each sip.

D: Starts off great -- really great -- but finishes badly. I'm mixed about this one.

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Photo of brow1901
4.39/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this about a month ago, but the review got lost with site issues. I liked it alot so when I found another 4 pack I picked it up, hopefully the hops haven't diminished yet.

A- Nothing overly impressive in appearance, pale straw gold. Bright white head with very little retention, and some lacing.

S- Nice, great hop scent. A good amount of fruity esters, mostly citrus (lemon, grapefruit). Some spicy pine smells, its all very fresh smelling, no earthy notes.

T- Bright up front hops, not in your face tongue smack hops. But rather a smooth crisp clean fresh hop flavor. I can't tell that this beer is a month old probably too early to see diminishments.

M- Fresh, light carbonation. Medium bodided.

D- Very drinkable, almost like a session if it had lower abv. But thats just my opinion, I love these fresh hop beers. And this is a great one, one of the best imo.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appears a bright golden copper slight hazed hue with a light white head forming thick atop the glowing orange body. Lacing is fine and even down the sides of my chalice.

Aroma has a solid vegetable affair going on with green onion and fresh resinous citric hops, a semi sweet lightly toasted cracker malt profile not much sweetness going on.

Flavor is more of the same with the green onion flavor hitting pretty hard on the palate. A resinous semi sugary sweetness wrapped with green onion and a mild garlic flavor hit hard. I can't see drinking this one in number, that vegetable hop freshness found here is much different than other fresh hopped ales out on the market.

Mouthfeel is oily with hop resins a bit hot with a mild alcohol burn, this beer really isn't really my idea of fresh hopped ale. A sweet sugar malt base with that green onion tone throws the party off carbonation was mild and smooth, but overall the finish from the onion stays on your breathe.

Drinkability overall is pretty weak, not worth the 5.99 I paid for at Fathead's this past weekend but I've been wanting to try it. I don't think I could drink a four pack of this stuff.

Update for 2011 exponentially better than the last batch...this beer was drank at the Sharp Edge for around 7 bucks a bottle and suprisingly totally worth every penny.

Pours a super pale golden hazed color with a bright white head forming thick, I was shocked at how light this beer poured. The nose was full of pungent fresh wet hops esepcially citrus/herbal/grassy tones, of course there is a light pale biscuit malt feature addeded in the nose as well. Pretty damn good bitterness balanced with enough pale biscuit malts just to take the edge of it, but as a whole it's a dank super hoppy harvest ale from our friends at Founders...damn I'm going to get some 12.99 4 packs at Giant Eagle this coming week a damn tasty fine beer that should be drank in number meant to be enjoyed with friends. I was buying this for a friend not familiar with the hops and he kept calling it the "weed" beer, by the way he was loving it. Mouthfeel was bitter dry clean finish, with ample carbonation and the drinkability factor was inasane for something so hoppy. I could have drank this one all night as my only Harvest Ale at the Sharp Edge where two different Founders beers were flowing on tap. I had two pints of Founders Centennial but I really liked the Harvest ale.

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Photo of brewdoc75
4.29/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light yellow with orange undertones. Solid white head at about an inch. Strong lace.

S: Grassy, citrusy hops. Very floral and pleasant. Faint honey sweetness.

T: Beautiful hop flavors with tangerine, orange, lemon rind and a hint of grassiness. Nice balancing sweetness from the maltsm. Finishes with a grassy bitterness.

M: light bodied amd crisp. Finishes a bit sticky.

D: A very flavorful APA with loads of citrus hops. Grassy, but not too much like some harvest ales. Quite drinkable. This is my second 4 pack, I liked it so much.

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Photo of mcann2pu
3.84/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

a- pours into my Ommegang glass a yellow/ almost amber color with small bubbles rising to the surface of the glass,
s- very strong smell of hops overwhelms the smell here,
t- hops dominates this one, very good taste pine/ cirtus tasting hops,
d- its drinkable, wouldn't have more then a few at one time because of the hop oil taste on this one,

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Photo of Martin2D
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to fbm115 for sharing this one.

A - Pale yellow, streams of carbonation with a tiny head.

S - Hops with actually discernible roastiness from the malts.

T - Malt backbone is slightly roasty and the hop bouquet is very interesting. Very hoppy, citrus, slight pine, but very balanced against the malt.

M - Medium-high carbonation and light in body.

D - Very drinkable. Balanced, refreshing, great beer.

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Photo of Natural510
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright golden color with minimal head but nice lacing.
Very fruity to the nose; orange, lemon, melon with a hint of pine from the hops.
Immediate blast of fruit in the mouth; orange, grapefruit, melon, white grape. The fruit is coupled with an astringent forest leafiness, green tea and a slight buttery finish.
Smooth, dry in the mouth.
Very tasty offering, very drinkable. If these characteristics are common to wet-hop ales, I'll be seeking these out regularly in the autumn.

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Photo of jeffthecheff
3.62/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Recieved as an extra. I always welcome some Founders beer. Bottled on 5, no....9/23/09. Pretty fresh.

Pours an incredibly pale gold with some haze. Hop haze? White, fluffy head at first dies down to an eventual weak cap. Good lacing.

Aroma is piney, leafy, and most of all, citrusy. Slight fruity, melon aroma as well. The hop aromas are good, but are pretty restrained for a fresh hop ale. It smells fresh, but not super-wet-hop fresh.

The taste is focused on bitterness and hop flavors. It's got a solid, mouth coating bitterness with a slightly astringent, tea leaf flavor on the finish. Light, bright fruity hop flavors are there in the center, but are trumped by the bitter finish.

The body on this beer is moderatley carbonated, with a dry, bitter finish. Even though this is billed as a pale ale, its a sipper. Very bitter and with a solid body, this is a one or two pour deal.

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Photo of dismal
4.29/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottle to a pint glass. Pours a hazy/murky bright orange almost yellowish with a one finger white head. The head starts to slowly dissolve and before I take my first sip it's nearly gone, just parts of it still floating at the top. Still it leaves a little lacing on the glass. The smell is probably one of the better smelling IPAs I've had yet this fall. Very hoppy, citrus but mainly a nice piney hop smell for me. The taste isn't as bitter as I was expecting, but not exactly smooth. Very hoppy, pine hops are there and the citrus hops are a bit more apparent than in the smell. The only real bitterness is in the aftertaste. Not a high ABV so this one I could do the four pack of in a night and it's that good I could. I great IPA from Founders but I didn't expect anything less.

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Photo of organicbrewer
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A-clear gold. Huge cloudlike head. Nice

S-Tangerine peel. Blood oranges. Very light yeast esters. Really nice.

T- Lots of citrus fruit. Some very light pine. Next to no malt, this is hop juice! Very low bitterness, just flavor hops. Nice!

M-Medium dry. Medium carbonation. No alcohol heat

D-This is a great beer. A bit one dimentional (no malt) but if you like hop flavor without overpowering bitterness, than you'll like this beer.

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Photo of muskabeatz
3.95/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Golden, orange with a small head. Dissapates quickly but leaves good lacing behind.

S- Floral and citrus hop aromas, with some fruity undertones.

T- Very crisp, unrestrained hop flavor, with a hint of fruityness blended with the citrus and pine. Fades to an almost woody aftertaste with only a hint of malt at the beginning.

M- Medium body with lively carbonation. Thins out a bit on the finish.

D- I find founders to make some of the most drinkable brews around, and this one makes this one surely makes the cut. However, I don't think this one's quite good enough to become one of my favorites...

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Photo of sublimesipping
4.79/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Having found a new favorite micro, I am smitten. Everything I try from this brewery is simply delicious. this beer represents fall 09 for me. Piney, earty, great aroma of old growth forests, a beer that I want to curl up to the campfire with.
Poured into a tumbler pint, great color, and head retention and aroma to die for. Taste again of pine woods and citrus spioe. Very well balanced with and excelent finish. so easy on the palate. A lingering rememberence like the season, of of the best of its class, my harvest for 2009. Cheers to Founders!

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Photo of Beejay
4.07/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewing from memory, since the original review was eaten by technology. Overall I thought this beer was very well balanced. Great smell, nice looking, and the hop flavors really came though. Simply a great beer, and one I would seek out again.


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Photo of callmemickey
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark golden body. Massive creamy white head. Good retention slowly fades the head to a nice skim and sticky lacing.

S: Bright grapefruit, lemon and pine. Maybe a bit of fresh grass.

T: Much like the nose, this is a very fresh and inviting combination of citric and pine-like hop bitterness. Crisp and delicious.

M: Smooth. Somewhat thin finish. Otherwise a nice weight on the palate.

D: Top notch. A consistently solid harvest ale from Founders. It is up there among the best in the style.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle.

A- Pours a nice clear golden yellow color. Good size 1 1/2 finger eggshell white head. This dies down leaving little patches of sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Blasts of citrus and pine hops right off the get go. There is some orange and pineapple tones to this along with a light caramel malt in the backbone of this beer. Smells wonderful and to be honest a balanced beer.

T- Light malt in the front along with hops. Sweet underbody blends perfectly with citrus overtones in the front of the beer. This leads to a lighter bittering in the back end of the beer which is a pleasant surprise.

M- Medium mouthfeel. The carbonation on this is dead on for the beer and to be honest lets the beer dance all over the palate. Hops are left on the palate after the beer has been sip and lingers there wanting you to take another sip right away. Nice clean aftertaste which is light hops and semi-sweet malts.

D- This beer is drinking so easy it's almost hard to put down the glass. I could make this a everyday beer but sadly it's not offered year around.

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Photo of brewandbbq
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from the fridge. Aprox $4.50 for a single at Marty's in Newton, Mass..Ouch.

Pours clear and golden with a one inch head of dense white with a slow retreat and some decent lacing.

Aromatics lead off with a blast of pungent pine and citrus-laden hops. Tropical fruit and a hint of cut grass.

Medium bodied with a crisp, snappy mouthfeel.

A mildly stinging hop lash starts the palate with loads of resinous pine, citrus pith, and dank hop juice. Light malt is way in the back and the bitterness is firm and smooth.

Finishes with lingering citrus fruit and plenty of stinging bitterness.

What a great drinker. Probably the best wet-hop beer I've had yet.

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Photo of argock
4.49/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a clear pint glass. Bottled on 09/23/09 date on neck. Single purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $2.80.

A: Brilliant gold with 1-2 finger frothy off-white head with good retention and several lace rings

S: Bursting fresh floral and citrus hops aromas of lemon and orange with a bit of spiciness with a light caramel cookie malt sweetness

T: The malting is superior with a caramel and toffee character followed by hops that hit you over the head with fresh orange and lemon citrus, pine, and floral flavors.

M: Medium-bodied with a little too much carbonation but decent coating quality with floral and orange hops flavored cookie aftertaste.

D: An exceptional brew that misses the not so pleasant grassiness that some harvest ales are overpowered with and instead delivers fresh, sumptuous citrus and floral hops on a delicious substantial caramel and pale malt cookie-like sweetness. Another big winner from Founders.

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Photo of Stigs
4.04/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Been wanting to try this for awhile. 12oz bottles poured into a DFH signature glass.

A - pour yields very little head, whats there diminishes quickly into a small floating island in the glass. nothing sticking to the sides. color is a strong gold, looks like a lot of active carbonation.

S - yum. strong floral hops, smells pretty dank and sticky. some sweetness as the beer warms up a bit. very nice and somewhat unique.

T - wow, not quite was i was expecting. sweet maltiness hits first, then the hops slowly sneak in. some bitterness, but mostly again sweet and floral hop tastes. alcohol present on the backend, slightly distracting but not unpleasant, surprising for a 6.5%

M - slightly thicker than i was expecting. a good sipping APA/IPA. the stickiness in the back of my throat begs for more.

D - pretty enjoyable, not much else to say besides that. wish i had another 1 or 2, but no more.

notes: Founder's is one of my favorite breweries, and while this doesn't disappoint, it falls just outside my favorite Harvest ales.

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Photo of batty
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

slightly hazy peach-amber gold. bright white head that drops quick, but leaves a nice dense lace.

smells earthy, hoppy, but mostly just hoppy.. kinda reminds me of composting branches, but in a good way. wet hop.

tastes of a good balance - nice clean sweet malts on front that balance but don't distract from the last 3/4 - wet hop, more hop, ending with some orangey-hop and hoppy spiciness. very clearly wet hopped, and very clearly very good.

couldn't ask for a better mouthfeel for the style.. nice and thick, but not enough to be distracting. enough carbonation for a good feel and slight spritz, but not overwhelming.

just a touch cloying for drinkability in the strict sense, but i'd be happy to take me time for more of these.

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Photo of EvilPumpkin
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a four pack of this at the brewery and just finished the first one:

A: Light honey yellow with hints of ruby, almost amber but not quite. Very clear with an initially tall white head that retains decently. Solid lacing.

S: Fresh hops galore! A wonderful mixture of pine and citrus backed by a sturdy malt sweetness.

T: Slightly bitter and citrusy hop notes up front followed by a sweetness and finishing with a clean, green piney flavor which lingers for a nice long time on the tongue. Very fruity and green, a fantastic capturing of fresh hops.

M: A moderate thickness to be expected from an ale. The carbonation is just enough to dance on and tickle the tongue to give a bit more mouthfeel.

D: I could easily down the next three from the four pack, easily drinkable. Because the pine flavors lingered so strong for so long, I drank mine slowly to get the most flavor I could, which was great.

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Photo of OldSchoolGamer
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have had some really stellar Harvest Ales lately, and this one might be the best of the best. Whats unique about the style is that there is a strong hop prescense, similar to an IPA, but it lacks the dry and bitter finish commonly found in said style. Here is my review:

A: Pours a nice golden amber color. Head is pretty minimal and lacing is only okay, but it still looks very appetizing in the glass.

S/T: The aroma is an explosion of tropical fruit. Lots of pineapple and grapefruit. Taste is quite similar. Grapefruit and pineapple are very forward, along with a slight lemon character. Maybe a slight citrus fruit rind in there as well. Overall, lots of tropical fruits with little to no hop bitterness. Super juicy as well. Actually reminds me a lot of Double Trouble, only lighter. Excellent.

M/D: Mouthfeel is medium to light bodied and very smooth. Very juicy and thirst quenching. Very sessionable. Little bitterness.

Between Hoppin Frog, Sierra Nevada, Southern Tier, and Founders, this has been an excellent Harvest Ale season. Another gem from Founders. Strong hoppyness smoothed out to a nice and juicy mouthfeel. Well worth checking out. Excellent beer.

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Photo of swizzlenuts
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 version

The beer is poured a golden colour with a nice off white head. The beer has a great head retention with rather large bubbles. The nose on the beer is fantastic. It's filled with spicy resiny hops. A hint of grapefruit or citrus in the background. Almost no malt character at all.

The flavours in the beer come right out against your tongue. Tons and tons of spicy hops and a nice creamy caramel flavour in the backbone. I can almost feel the resin on my teeth while I'm drinking this. Quite tasty.

Good medium mothfeel, and I could probably drink a bunch of these. I love this spicy character.

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Photo of Burl41
4.76/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Bottle into pint glass

Appearance- Clear pale color, not quite golden. Mild head, that lasts but very thin

Smell-Wow a very clear and potent hop profile hits you. Citris and pine up front, you can tell there is a variety in hops used. Smells like a DIPA for sure.

Taste- Great hop flavor, malt is somewhat mild, doesn't have that body that a simliar IPA would have and the bitterness is pulled back but still a great hop pressence.

Mouthfeel-A little weak, more a session beer. Boarding on watery.

Drinkability- Like I said, a session beer for a hop head, great drinkability, and full range of hop flavors to boot.

Would drink again, but it's too bad it's a seasonal. Would not be bad at all to drink on a fall day after some time outside playing football.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.11/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz. bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery pint glass.

A: Pours a vigorous 4 finger creamy white head with excellent retention. Brew itself is a semi-cloud pale orange yellow with beautiful carbonation. Lacing is amazing considering the light body, with layers clinging to the side of the glass like a ruler.

S: grapefruit, pine, fresh grass, and hops, all with a excellent freshness

T: Starts off exceedingly sweet but changes very quickly to tree bark bitter, middle is calming, warm, and hoppy with flowery esters. Finish is abrupt, slightly tart, with hop bitterness.

M: Very light bodied but with a depth of character. Coarse and carbonated. Finishes quick and wet.

D: Highly drinkable, this is like an IPA with less citrus character. However, taste here is very developed and complex nonetheless.

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Photo of mckajd03
4.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nose full of grapefruit. Mouth full of pure hop freshness. A sweet maltiness peaks through and lingers on the tongue to take the bite off the hops. A strong but not overwhelming bitterness lingers on the back of the palate, capped with a presence of pine. Light color- almost yellow. Medium body with a good bit of effervescence. Cream of the crop.

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Founders Harvest Ale from Founders Brewing Company
4.21 out of 5 based on 4,392 ratings.
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