DKML | Founders Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Very Good
565 Ratings

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Malt Liquor

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Here you have what could be the first malt liquor worthy of a glass. Typically a slighted style, we thought we would class it up with a stay in the wood and a healthy dose of dry-hopping. A huge hit of corn gives this one a smooth sweetness while its time spent aging in bourbon barrels will give you reason to share. Be warned: this one’s a pry-off, not a twist-off.

Added by rudzud on 04-09-2017

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 565 |  Reviews: 189
Photo of Dope
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2017 bottle

A: Pours a clear reddish-gold with a tall tan head. Head fizzes out like a soda would, just a little bit slower. No real sign of any lacing.

S: Very sweet smelling. Caramel and vanilla from the bourbon barrels. Big sweet corn malt.

T: Big caramel and toffee up front from the bourbon along with an enormous alcohol harshness. Some oaky vanilla too. Big sweet corn malt hit in the finish and then it's back to that oaky vanilla. Huge alcohol sting on the back end, this one is strronnnggg. Instantly belly warming from the first sip.

M: Not as thick as syrupy as I expected. The huge alcohol presence really cuts down the alcohol and the heaviness. Big beer regardless with a big ole kick to boot.

O: Well, it's a pretty simple formula, lots of corn and lots of alcohol but the bourbon does add quite a kick both in flavor and in intensity. Definitely the best malt liquor I've ever had and it's not even close.

 929 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of SHDoyle
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Description: Golden color and slightly hazy with no head. Smell is sweet, corn and boozy. The alcohol is not only apparent, it might be a little too apparent. Taste is similar to the smell in that it's sweet, corny and very bourbon forward. There did seem to be some other sweet notes aside from the corn but I couldn't place it exactly...sort of cherry, apple...maybe vanilla. Feel was smoother than a normal IPA and a medium to heavy texture.

Overall: 4 (This beer is good and I may or may not drink it again) As I imagine it is with most folks, I didn't really know what to expect from a bourbon barrel aged malt liquor so don't have much basis for comparison. With that being said I think this worked and was a generally good, drinkable beer although I don't know that I'd drink a lot of it. The alcohol was a little too much for me; I may let one sit for a while and see if it mellows out. And as I've said before about other Founders beers that trend outside the norm, 'kudos' to the brewery for having the creativity and/or guts to try something like this.

 1,072 characters

Photo of cdwil
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Hopstout
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of lemmy187
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Beejay
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: A beautiful clear golden amber in color with a small white head.

S: Huge amount of booze, followed by a big hit of vanilla and oak, with corn rounding out the finish.

T: Bourbon bomb at first sip. Huge amount of booze, as well as oak, vanilla, and corn whiskey. creaminess in the finish, with a vanilla extract finish dotted with earthy hops.

M: Medium thick in body with high carbonation, a bit of a bitter cling in the finish, and a touch cloying.

O: Tasty, but still rough around the edges with a helluva kick, I suppose it is intended to be that way... But still other have made big beers, even bigger with less abrasiveness.

 640 characters

Photo of stephenjmoore
3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Phineasco
4.26/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Nrod
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of AJmon13
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Red5StandingBy
4.19/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12oz short bottle into Pilsener glass. Bottled on June 17th 2017.

L: Pours a clear bronze, finger width off white head has pretty solid retention.

S: Lots of booze, vanilla bourbon aroma, with sweet corn notes.

T: Again a lot of booze, as expected with a 14.2% beer, some sweet corn, lots of vanilla and bourbon.

F: Super smooth and creamy, crisp carbonation, slightly drying corn finish.

O: Pretty stellar beer here from Founders, if you like Bourbon of course.

 490 characters

Photo of sparx1100
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of 6thstreetbrewpub
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Czequershuus
4.71/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This beer pours a brownish gold with a medium sized head. The aroma is bold and very boozy. Vanilla and caramel are immediately present, along with sweet corn, corn bread, dates, brown sugar, raisin, and honey. Overall it gives a very sweet impresion, tempered by a hot, alcoholic quality. The flavor starts with a strong feel of butterscotch candy, then a heavy dose of vanilla, and then a stronger fruit drive tone, with fig, raisin, date, and ripe grape, then a strong caramel sweetness, and an assertive mix of the earlier flavors on the finish, with a big whack of burning booze. The mouthfeel is full, but not overly so, with ample bubbly carbonation and a coating finish. Overall I really like this beer. This was one of my most anticipated beers of the year, and it really does live up to my hopes. It is big a beastly, and I was worried from the smell too sweet, but the richness is nicely controlled. The flavors shift complexly though a sip, with especially unexpected dark fruit notes. It does drink very like Bourbon, of which I am a fan. Great concept and a superb beer.

 1,084 characters

Photo of HopsForBrains
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of gobuccos
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of bobhits
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

I find myself for once rather confused with the low scores on a beer. Normally, I'm the guy bringing down the scores.

Founders has a pretty nice beer here. I won't call this a master piece or great, but I'll have another!

Pour is dull, a bit of head over a golden colored, somewhat static liquid. This is pretty expected at 14% though one might hope for more of a dark color with bourbon or maybe just me.

You can really smell corn here. Wow that's not a normal note I think of with beer, though it happens in bourbon. The finish is bourbon notes, vanilla, oak, honey, and we could go paint thinner or alcohol at the end. Very light on the negatives.

The bourbon gives a nice flavor here, serve this one cold guys. I will say it again, this is best cold where some of the off flavors at the end are muted and the really great bourbon showcase on a simple malt beverage is really honestly NICE! This is bourbon on a sweet sugary beer. Just keep it cold (ok very cool, this doesn't need to be on ice, just not a cellar temp beer).

The beer even as it warms up is still super drinkable. I've had stouts, plenty of them, that weren't as easy to drink.

I see some pretty negative scores here, I get it, but if you like bourbon this is not a bad idea.

The price is high, the beer isn't a master piece. The biggest loss is that founders didn't put a better beer in here (could we have had more KBS?), but I like the beer if we ignore all that. I'd recommend it on draft in a snifter.

 1,510 characters

Photo of Burke4375
4.62/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of luke12345
4.24/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of GarbageMan10
3.71/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Derranged
1.96/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 4 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.75

As a malt liquor drinker, I was excited to try this. I bought two small bottles and one big one. The reviews indicated that this was a hit or miss, so I chose to open one of the small bottles first.

A- So far so good. Nice amber/dark golden color, small white head. Poured into a McChouffe tulip.

S- This is where it turns bad. Initially, all I got was Jameson Irish Whiskey and some faint hops. As the beer warmed up a bit, the booze died down a little and picked up some fruity notes, more hops and maybe a touch of vanilla.

T- Atrocious. Booze completely overpowered this. Irish whiskey, some hops and more fruity notes. Best way I could describe it is a somewhat hoppy, fruity Irish Whiskey and soda. I didn't pick up any corn, vanilla, caramel or oak.

M- Thick and carbonated. 14.2 abv, this drank more like something 80 proof. I was sweating after the first few sips.

O- Horrible stuff. Probably drain pour worthy but I toughed out and finished the glass.
I'm not sure what Founders was trying to do but this did not work. The only redeeming quality is the buzz factor. I was good and drunk which I like.

Couple of other things. I don't care for the overall condescending attitude towards malt liquor but I'm used to it. However, bashing their own product by writing "A Malt Liquor That May Be Worthy Of A Glass" on the label is an entirely new level of snobbery. Guess what Founders: This beer ISN'T worthy of a glass. You know when people pour out a little bit of a forty bottle for their dead "homies"? Well that's all it's worthy of. However, instead of pouring out just a little, the whole bottle should be spilled out on to the street after which I'd pick up a forty of Country Club. This is an insult to malt liquor. I typically don't get all worked up over a beer but the poor product paired with the snobbish remark on the label aggravated me. Anyway, to be fair, I will keep the other bottles I bought. Perhaps some age will calm this down.

 1,973 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured a straw gold body with two-finger head that dies quick. Sweet caramel malt aroma with notes of bread, wood and booze. Boozy, heavy, bready body with sticky sweetness similar to caramel/toffee almost honey due to thickness (hint of vanilla) with a hot finish. The booze gets tiring as beer warms but it's enjoyable.

 324 characters

Photo of tomdiamond
4.44/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Clear straw color with thick, fluffy white head. Excellent retention and lacing. Smells sweet with caramel and bourbon notes. Taste is borderline sickly sweet with caramel, vanilla, and some bourbon. Alcohol is apparent without being boozy. Incredibly smooth mouthfeel. I drank two of these, puked, passed out on the toilet and woke up with a hangover. Would repeat.

 366 characters

DKML from Founders Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 565 ratings