Founders Harvest Ale | Founders Brewing Company

1,099 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

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Reviews: 1,099 | Ratings: 4,440
Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.92/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another solid offering from Founders--a pale gold color with fleeting head and lacing. Smell is largely floral and citrus hops... not too strong, but delicious. Taste follows the nose, with a nice bitter punch up front. Good stuff here. Mouthfeel is a bit thin for me, but nice dry finish with it. A good sessionable beer here.

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Photo of eternaljester81
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a somewhat hazy, slightly amber blond. A less than aggressive pour yields around a half-inch head of bright white, which settles to a wispy cloud. Lacing is minimal, but what's there is sticky.

S - Floral hops all the way, with some grapefruit/lemon/bitter citrus notes. There's also some hints of alcohol in the back-end.

T - Bitter hops up front, nearly balanced with light malt. However, as should be expected, the hops are boss. As with the nose, there's also the hint of lemon zest, and grapefruit. Despite some alcohol in the scent, the 6.5% abv is surprisingly well hidden in the taste. The aftertaste is little on the bitter side, but still decently clean.

M - Not thick, but also not watery. Slightly oily from the big hop presence.

D - At 6.5%, this is dangerously drinkable. The hops, while assertive, are not overbearing. However, for the price and availability, this may be a beer to covet, rather than quaff.

All around another excellent beer from Founders. It's just a shame this beer has such limited availability.

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Photo of JordanEllwanger
4.55/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy golden color with a decent head. Smell is full of hops, sticky and thick. Taste is just the same, very hoppy and sweet. So much hop flavor in this one. Not an overbearing bitterness to such a hoppy taste. Very surprising and a great beer. One of the best beers I've had with such a strong presence of hops.


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Photo of JohnL9013
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wow, a really well-constructed beer from Founder's.

A: Pours the typical pale cloudy IPA orange, a little less glow and a little more straw colored. Weak head that dissipates quickly, but good lacing.

S: Wow, a huge hop nose with a strong citrus character. It's very different from a dry-hopped ale's smell.

T: Definitely a huge hop flavor with a distinct grapefruit and citrus flavor. What a huge difference between this and a dry-hopped beer. This is like the Fresca of beers... except strong and delicious and IPA-ey.

M: Too carbonated. Doesn't settle well in the mouth.

D: Relatively drinkable... kind of sessionable, I'd imagine.

This beer's definitely worth trying. The problems that it has with mouthfeel are easily compensated for by its excellent flavor and smell.

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Photo of farrago
4.09/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The head crests at about one finger, bleached white and mostly large to very large bubbles which helps it dissipate swiftly, moderate stickiness to the lacing. More dark yellow in color than light orange amber, has a gauziness which traps light inside despite the overall lighter hue. The hops-driven nose is more peat moss and forest floor scrub than grassy, more relaxed and less stiff than expected, orange peel, very light honey, more so pineapple, nectarine bite with softer apricot tones, pine oil, the malts very much in the background. Medium-bodied, here the pink grapefruit, tangerine citrus leaps out at you. Resiny pine, more of the forest scrub, has a yeasty side that just manages to carve out a niche. Starts off dry and ends much drier, even as it adheres to your mouth walls it prickles and falls away. Again, little malt balance, a smooth residue at best. Comes across like it serves two masters, one make a big impression, the other stay true to your roots. Very good but not benchmark.

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Photo of BeachRez
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received bottle from Hooliganlife!

Poured into a pint glass.

A- The color was a golden/orange color with a really crisp head.

S- I think this is the key to this beer. Just a very clean, citrisy smell. I just smelled fresh. Nice hop aroma. Not overly sweet at all.

The Taste and Mouthfeel are the same on this. Real nice bitterness that I think is balanced by the sweetness of the hops and malt. Very easy to drink and just GOOD.

Not something I can drink a lot of as it kills my palate, but very good for a one beer with a chicken dinner.

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

Poured from bottle into pint glass

A- Golden with a slight orange hue. 1-finger head that receded quickly leaving a decent lacing. Pretty plain looking.

S- Hop profile is that of citrus with a slight piney-ness, maybe some floral notes.

T- Bitterness from hops comes through without all of the flavors listed in the aroma. Not as complex as the aroma led on, but not bad by any means. I also get some freshly mown grass as it warms a little. Also, slight biscuity malt in the finish.

M- Sort of "sticky" on the palate and down the throat from the hop oils/resins with a lingering bitterness.

D- While this wasn't the most impressive APA, it was damn good and extremely drinkable. I could put several of these back quickly.

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Photo of eljefe21
4.62/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden off yellow color. Thick body produces a single-finger head with some direct pouring. Some watery, lightly bubbled lacing.

S: An incredible citrus-pine smell leaps from the glass. Hop smell to get a hop head's mouth watering.

T: Bitter, sticky hop burn hits the tongue and dries out at the finish. Not much of a malt balance, but with a hop taste like this, who needs balance.

M: Body is medium with a hoppy oily feel. Finish is dry and quenching.

D: I could drink several of these every night of the year. Alas with this being a seasonal brew that's not an option. Find myself buying this again and again knowing I won't be able to get this soon. Hoppy and big enough for cooler weather, crisp and dry enough for warm weather.

Served: in a faceted mug.

Review from notes taken on: 11/9/09.

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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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Founders Harvest Ale from Founders Brewing Company
4.21 out of 5 based on 4,440 ratings.
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