Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) | Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale)Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Old ale brewed with molasses and oak-aged.

50 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-31-2005

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,257
Ratings:
4,567
Avg:
3.99
pDev:
20.05%
 
 
Wants:
203
Gots:
1,120
For Trade:
54
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,257 | Ratings: 4,567
Photo of bret27
3.99/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bottle in a trade several months back. I think it was from GCurlow but if someone reads this and it's wrong shoot me a BM for correction.

S: It smells so... old! It's just too... old!
Ok, first there is a faint whiff of corn, which dissapeared quickly. Then sweet dark fruits dominate. Pruiny, raisiny, vanilla, bread. booze.

A: Dark orange, almost no head at all. What little there is does make a nice lace though.

T: Maple syrupy, bready, vanilla, really sweet, perhaps a bit too sweet. Not sure if it was oak aged, but it kind of tastes like a bit of oak or age. Booze isn't all that overpowering, more of a warming sensation from the tip of the tongue to the top of the cardiac sphincter.

M/D: Fairly thick and syrupy. Pretty drinkable, but not for sissies. More for the curmudgeon type.

Overall: Complex + pretty tasty. Probably not for everyone, but a good sipper. Not an A+, but not a D- either by any means. (By the way the picture of the bottle on this site has a lovely background, it really brings out the grizzled old man on the bottle)

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Photo of woosterbill
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: A vigorous pour produces an inch of tan foam atop a deep crimson-brown body with hazy swirls inside; pretty good retention and a decent amount of lace. Good looking beer.

S: Rich malty aromas of ripe fruit (raisins dominate, with sweet plums and ripe cherries as well), plus a distinct nuttiness (candied walnuts and pecans); no apparent signs of the 50 claimed IBUs, but I'm not complaining about such a powerful and appealing aroma.

T: More nutty and purely malty than fruity, with a decidedly vinous finish. A little bit of bitterness creeps in on the aftertaste, but it tastes more like residual booze than hops. Quite sweet overall, perhaps too much so.

M: Pretty thick, syrupy body with low carbonation.

D: Goes down pretty easily considering the high ABV, but would have been helped immensely by just a bit more carbonation. As it is, just a bit too cloying.

Notes: Hugely complex and enjoyable, this is definitely a beer worth trying. It would probably be worthwhile to see how a year or two affects matters. Solid brew.

Cheers!

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Photo of goblue3509
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark black like color with no head. The aroma is of a maple syrup and caramel malt backbone with dark fruits (raisins, dates, and figs) present and a touch of some breadiness. The taste is of a maple syrup backbone on top with dark fruits and some caramel with a slight taste of alcohol. The mouthfeel is thick with a slight amount of carbonation, it does sit a little heavy on the tongue. Overall the drinkability is okay for the style, it is very complex in nature and keeps you interested, a little thicker than some though.

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Photo of RedBrewer83
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet...

A: Not much to describe really, pours a super viscous dark amber with hints of orange, entirely opaque, absolutely no head, looks like syrup in a glass.

S: Heavy maple syrup, rum, dark fruit (raisins primarily), faint bread aroma, slight boozyness, figs and dates as well. Wow, pretty complex overall. Nose doesn't jump out of the glass, but its solid.

T: As complex as the nose with added booze and caramel malt. Lots of fruit, heavy syrupy rum raisin character. Very nice overall, really complex and balanced, booze adds just enough kick but doesn't overpower the flavor profile.

M: Heavy body, like drinking carbonated syrup! For a cold winter day this is perfect. Slightly carbonated, just enough to wake up the tongue, surprised to find any carbonation with the lackluster pour...

D: At 9.3% this is big beer and fairly drinkable, the complexity and slight boozy quality makes it a little less drinkable, but pretty nice overall. Wish I had these guys around here....

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Photo of darklordlager
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a burnt orange colour, with a small head after an aggressive pour. Tan, buttery bubbles mark the top. Some floaties can be seen.

S: Load of caramel malt, and roasted malt--giving it an almost "burnt" quality. Some citric hops and dark fruit are noticeable as well. Light smoky scent mixing in with the fusel alcohol.

T: Maple syrup coated raisins, rum, biscuit-coming across a bit sweet, not unlike pancake-y sweetness. Kind of "crusty," like a pie crust. Sugar cookie hides behind the syrupy caramel malt. Improves a good amount as it warms. Creamed corn comes out a little as it warms as well. Light floral element.

M: Low carbonation with a slightly syrupy body.

D: Slightly syrupy with a little bit of a medicinal edge--Hard to say if it will improve with age, probably worth a shot though.

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Photo of inxy
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Little to no head, poured into a pint glass. Looks thick in the pour. Reddish brown color similar to a vienna lager. No real lacing, just typical hiccups of small foamy bubbles meagerly clinging to the wall. It's hazy, the carbonation looks similar to the haze of tap water. No real movement.

S - I'm not picking up much more than a faint sweetness, ginger, and definite alcohol.

T - I'm liking it. Reminds me of a bourbon mixed drink someone made me once. Oatmeal, bourbon, vanilla, tiny bit of ginger spice. Faint smoke in the finish.

M - Thick, almost syrupy heaviness. Carbonation is persistent throughout, but it isn't harsh. Feels cloudy. Alcohol lightly warms my mouth and chest.

D/Overall - I actually am enjoying it. It's above average, thats for sure. Founders seems to be consistently delivering for me. Higher alcohol, my second beer for the night, and I'm already feeling it halfway through my glass, so probably my last. Nice warm beer for the weird winter we're having in Michigan.

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Photo of dedrinker
2.64/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Dark amber color. I smelled like caramel and cocoa butter.

The flavor was a mash up of Nutella, vanilla, cheap milk chocolate and caramel, more cocoa butter, macadamia nuts etc.

Full bodied, and the finish just kept bringing on the flaver mentioned above to make a beer that I had to dump out.

the over all impression was one of numerous artificial flavors.

I bought two bottles, and I refuse to touch the other one.

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Photo of rustymoore
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a reddish orange with good head and lacing throughout...as usual pouring agressively. Smells of fruit and malts. I can sense the sweetness before tasting. Taste is very complex with cherry, raisins, and hops are prevelent. Mouthfeel is carbonated but not too much. Very drinkable as the higher ABV is so well masked almost as well as any high gravity beer I have ever sampled.

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Photo of Goliath
3.55/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy reddish brown with a thin layer of off white head. The head quickly disappears to a ring of bubbles.

The aroma is ok. There's a bit of vanilla and an earthy tea like aroma. There's loads of caramel available too.

The taste is ok. There's some nice dark malts with a load of caramel and an earthy hay like element. There's a slight touch of vanilla.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a nice dose of fine carbonation.

Drinkability is moderate. The ABV is relatively high, but well incorporated and easily managed. The flavor profile is decent, although it's not the best old ale I've run into. A nice drinker though.

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Photo of scottg
4.06/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a tulip

Pours a murky amber/light brown with no head leaving light lacing. Aromas of brown sugar, oak, vanilla, cherry, whiskey. Nicely balanced sweetness with subtle bitterness, cherry, chocolate, lemon and caramel flavors. Medium carbonation and body with a chalky mouthfeel. The 9.3% alcohol is hidden well, solid drinkability.
Overall, a very tasty beer I will have again

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Photo of champ103
3.54/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a dark ruby/orange color. A small bubbly white head forms with poor retention. No lace to speak of.
S: Smoky whiskey notes up front. Sweet vanilla and caramel. Some light nondescript dark fruits linger. Warm booze, and slightly oxidized.
T: Smoky and sweet with lots of alcohol. Vanilla and caramel again. A bit astringent. A lingering bitterness.
M/D: A full body that is syrupy and sticky. The alcohol is powerful. This is a bit rough around the edges.

Not bad, but not one of Founders better offerings. This almost seems like it was whiskey barrel aged, and the barrel has taken over. Considering this is not barrel aged, that is a little off putting. However, it is a nice beer for a night cap, and worth a try.

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Photo of ChadQuest
4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer like this is the reason snifters exist in the beer world.

After pouring into my snifter the half finger of head reduced in short time to a ring around the edge, but not before releaseing an impecable aroma.

Throughout the tasting i swirled the glass often just for the aroma.
The aroma lets you know right away that this will give you a bit of heat. i love that.

The sips are sooo smooth, with that bit of heat the smell warned you of, though the smell was a bit stronger.
The Oak and vanilla flavors aren't overpowering,but balanced nicely with the malt and low hop flavors.

When drinking this i kept thinking it would be a great beer for somebody who loves Cognac, with its bit of hotness, sweetness,loads of flavor, and smooth mouthfeel. This beer is what i personally want from an drink Old Ale, as i like a little hotness. I will buy this often.

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Photo of kiddynamite920
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Believe this ones from early 09. Still had the twist off top, and opened with quite a pop. Poured into a snifter, quite a bit of floating sediment. Dark brown with some amber highlights. Head faded quick and is remaining only as a soapy looking ring around the glass. Aroma is a malt bomb on this one, huge caramel presence. Some brandy aromas and a good booziness. The malts are forefront in this aroma. Exceptionally sweet and malty on the palate, super silky. The silky mouthfeel accentuates the maltiness of this brew. Has some tart flavors as well, almost like bing cherries. Big and sweet but with an underlying tartness. As stated before, the mouthfeel makes this beer what it is. So smooth and drinkable, must age well because from what I can tell, this is almost a year old.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Obtained in trade from ShogoKawada (thanks!). Bottled February 2008? ABV is 9.8%. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter. Lightly chilled.

Persian red liquid with some particles in suspension. Buff-tinged beige head, thin but with good retention and heavy, messy, sandy lacing and thin, clear, sluggish legs.

Heady fruit aromatics, partly reconstituted and carmelized: figs, apricots, raisins, with a hint of flowers and very light and leathery sherry-like oxidation.

Faint brandy barrel leads the palate, with honey, lavender (soap?), chewing tobacco, caramel malt, and toffee. A touch of spice from the alcohol I think - hops are surprisingly intact, contributing notable bitterness. Long finish with a bit of leather and complex malt.

Medium-bodied, mildly astringent, very warming, and slightly sap-like mouthfeel.

I'm curious how this ages - there are some notes that if emphasized would render it undrinkable, while others would make a delectable curiosity. Fresh, it is the peer of many (though not all) British examples I've sampled. Probably not the normal place to start my Founders journey, but I'll take what I can get :-).

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Photo of Urbancaver
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Nice dark brown colour with minimal head.

Aroma- Sweet and molasses smells. Can smell the alcohol a bit.

Taste- incredibly hoppy and malty. Very good flavour with a strong alcohol finish

Mouthfeel- A bit syrupy for my taste but great feel.

Drinkability- A bit too strong on the alcohol and too syrupy to make it very drinkable but quite tasty so its still very good :)

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Photo of Minkybut
2.55/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured this awful beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was the color of gasoline. The beer poured with no head at all. The beer smelled sour and had a sour taste that was not pleasant at all. Little bit of a burn to it and earthy tasting. I will not buy again.

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Photo of brownbeer
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2009 vintage

Pours deep amber with a short lived head. Looks like what I think an old ale should look like.

Complex nose with some nutty oxidized notes, vanilla, oak, and rich, sweet malt complexities.

The flavor is fairly sweet, low carbonation and has some viscosity. Has a certain English yeast characteristic with an oak aged feel. Raisiny, bubblegum fruitiness, loaded with intricate malt nuances.

Really a very good beer that, given a couple of years, should really round out and become even more enjoyable. We shall see.

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Photo of jaluria
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a semi-opaque dark ruby-brown with a soft, subdued head that leaves behind little lacing. Aromas of honey, astringent, alcohol (boozy) and roasted nuts. The taste is dominated by alcohol and malt as would be expected for this style. Hints of ripened fruit, honey and dry herbs seem to come out in the finish. Make no mistake this beer is all about sugary, spicy malt. The mouthfeel is thick and succulent with plenty left for me to enjoy after a sip. The drinkability takes a hit because of the boozy nature of this beer but still an excellent example of this style and one that I enjoy in the winter.

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Photo of wanglaoshi
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this for $9.99/4 pack at Tiffany's in Kalamazoo, MI. This was the first time I tried this one.

A - Translucent dark brown with a white head which quickly dissipates leaving some lacing. Sediment, yes; cloudy, no.

S - Smells very sweet. Molasses very prominent.

T - Came at me totally from left field. Hoppiness balances out the sweet, malty flavor very nicely. Somewhat heady alcoholic finish.

M - Just what I like: Full-bodied, slightly syrupy mouthfeel. Low carbonation level.

D - This took a little while to get used to, but very drinkable. The slightly higher level of bitterness helps offset the sweet, syrupy characteristics.

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Photo of philbe311
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - A very slight creamy tan head rises post pour and fades away almost immediately leaving an extremely thin veil of lace and a collar of bubbles around the edge of the glass... A murky medium brown color with hints of aubergine... A couple of very small, very slow paced carbonation bubbles can be seen rising towards the top of the glass... Some minor lacing clings to the side of the snifter...

S - Sweet red grapes... Caramel... Brown Sugars... Golden raisins... Fig... Rum...

T - The sweetness eluded to by the nose continues on the palette... Rum soaked raisins... Fig... Butterscotch... Honey... Raisins... Sweet grapes... A very minor medicinal presence...

M - Medium to full bodied... Syrupy and sticky... A tad chewy... Just a very very slight carbonation on the tongue... A slight alcoholic warmth...

D - This beer is slightly over the top in terms of sweetness... Oddly though that only seems to add character of this brew... Founders makes one brew after another that push boundaries and this is not exception...

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Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Opaque toffee-brown-ish color with small head and little lacing. Smell is sweet with some raisons, toffee, and a bit of alcohol. Taste is really good and near the same level as Adam. Dark fruit, caramel, molasses, and vanilla all make this one tasty. Very creamy and full-bodied. Delicious. A great sipper that will warm you up, more great stuff from Founders.

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Photo of aubuc1
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle dated best before 10/6/14 poured in to a snifter.

Pours a cloudy amber brown with a thinning tan head.

Smell is ripe fruit with some light sweet malt and a little bit of funky oddity.

Taste is a slightly bitter, smooth sweet malt. Great big boozy finish without any flavor overpowering.

Mouthfeel is pretty creamy and nice.

Considering the abv, the drinkability is very good. Can't wait for this to age.

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Photo of hckyfn9999
3.82/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky golden brown color with a small white head. Aroma is full of sweet caramel and honey. There is also some fruit present.

Taste is sweet with caramel, honey, and raisins present. The finish is roasted, with almost a smokiness, and slightly dry and bitter. There is a hint of dark fruit in the background too. Mouthfeel is thick and full bodied.

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Photo of josefnewsong
4.11/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy amber/ruby with decent head and significant lacing. Smells of alcohol, toffee, and wood. Taste has a heavy alcohol presence with hints of wood, caramel, toffee, and bourbon. Mmm it warms the December soul.

This one is worth holding on to for a while.

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Photo of hdrider
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured with a 1/2" orangish head and liquid is a redich orange. Good lacing. smells of molasses, brown sugar and dried fuit.
tastes of molasses, caramel, dries apricots maybe even vanilla. Good alcohol burn in the belly, but hidden well by the full rich flavors.
I like it alot in the late fall and winter at the fire.

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Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) from Founders Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,257 ratings.
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